Savannah City Council to vote on partnership with U.S. Attorney’s office

Published: Aug. 9, 2022 at 4:35 PM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Savannah City Council will vote on a partnership with the U.S. Attorney’s office this Thursday.

Savannah Mayor Van Johnson outlined the proposed partnership during his weekly news conference today saying it would create a role within the U.S. Attorney’s office that would focus solely on prosecuting gun crimes in the city.

Mayor Van Johnson says if Council approves the MOU during this Thursday’s Council meeting, getting to the process to find a prosecutor for the U.S. Attorney’s Office will move quickly, adding funding has already been found through the City Attorney’s office for the role.

Mayor Johnson says the potential partnership with the U.S. Attorney’s Office here in Savannah is part of a three-pronged approach to curb violent crime in the City: prevention, intervention and prosecution.

“The great thing about this is that we will have someone on board, all the time, with their mind solely focused on the City of Savannah while making sure they have the federal resources behind them to make sure that they do real time.”

Mayor Johnson says if repeat offenders face federal sentences that come without the possibility of parole, they might think twice before doing so, and be more willing to give up information on unsolved cases to investigators to avoid federal time.

“I’m hoping that from that, we’ll be able to solve some of these other other unsolved homicides here in our city.”

The Mayor was asked if partnering with the feds indicates local prosecution efforts aren’t effective enough when it comes to keeping violent criminals off the streets.

“It says nothing, other than we have a criminal justice system that is overwhelmed. And we have individuals that are more prolific than others, and that can be addressed through the federal system.”

Without saying who, Mayor Johnson indicated they already have a potential candidate in mind for the role.

Again, Council votes on whether or not to approve this MOU this Thursday.

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