One response by the city has been to redeploy homicide detectives to respond faster to killings and and reduce stress on the officers investigating them. Under a pilot program that began Aug. 1, all 32 homicide investigators have been reassigned to the police department's first shift which runs 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. Teams of detectives will be on call and respond to slayings that happen outside the first shift.
The city is struggling to curb the homicide rate even as the agency prepares for a federal review of its operations by the U.S. Justice Department's Office of Community Oriented Policing Services. The review, requested by city leaders, was announced last week.