Police statistics show that Fort Wayne police have conducted more gun raids this year than last year

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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (AP) — Fort Wayne police have conducted more gun raids this year than last year, according to police statistics.

Sgt. Gary J. Hensler Jr. told The Journal Gazette that the department’s Gang and Violent Crimes Unit has executed 19 raids and seized 68 guns so far this year. He said the unit completed 17 raids and acquired 130 guns last year.

The group aims to stop gun violence in the city by removing firearms from known violent offenders, Hensler said.

Capt. Kevin Hunter is head of the police department’s Vice and Narcotics Unit. He said the two units began working together in 2014 and pooled their resources.

One of the most recent raids occurred last week at two apartments, Hensler said. Officers confiscated 1 kilogram (2 pounds) of marijuana, more than $11,000 in cash and several guns.

Four men were arrested during the raid on various drug charges. They ranged in age from 18 to 21 and were known gang members, according Hensler.

He said Fort Wayne gangs often overlap, which make them difficult to track.

“Certain smaller sects inside the large gang refer to themselves differently,” Hensler said.

The gang unit increased patrols in the south side of the city in May. There were 15 shootings in the area with reported injuries during the last two weeks of May, one of which resulted in homicide.

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Information from: The Journal Gazette, http://www.journalgazette.net