An Update about Improving Madison Safety in the Midtown District

by Safety Connection

Madison Police districts have completed two weeks of the summer Strategic Plans to reduce crime and disorder and increase community engagement in the city this summer. Today Captain Jason Freedman offered an update about progress in the city’s Midtown District (roughly bordered by Gammon Road to the west and Park Street to the east, University Avenue to the north and the Beltline—plus the Orchard Ridge and Allied Drive neighborhoods—to the south):

“In the first week of the plan (6/7 to 6/15), Midtown personnel spent over 60 proactive hours in each of our priority areas (crime, traffic, and community engagement). Some efforts include:

  • Extensive foot patrol throughout the district, meeting residents and businesses
  • KOPER patrol following burglaries in the Vilas and Regent Street neighborhoods(as a reminder, KOPER is a type of random and intermittent foot patrol that research shows can reduce crime and disorder. [more about KOPER here]
  • Traffic monitoring and enforcement in many of our identified areas concern such as Odana Rd, University Ave, and Drake St.
  • Participated in coffee with a cop, community meetings, and a community bike event
  • Theft from Auto report cards on Charter, Randall, and Monroe St

As I said in my introduction to our plan earlier this month, I expect we will encounter some challenges and opportunities along the way. One challenge is that certain types of calls—including shots fired and robberies—continue to be occurring more frequently in 2021 than in 2020. Handling these priority calls necessarily reduces time available to be proactive. Also, we are seeing increases in disorder (and in some cases crime) at many parks throughout the city, including in Midtown (such as Allied Park and Brittingham Park.

My team and I are working proactively with stakeholders and residents to address some of these problems, and specifically to prevent escalations that result in violent crime and/or weapons violations that have taken place in those areas; this is important and appropriate, but again impacts our ability to resource other issues.

I’ll finish with two requests for you:

1. Please call us. If you are experiencing a problem impacting your quality of life—noise, trespassing, drug use, disturbances etc. I cannot promise an outcome, but making that call to non-emergency at 608-255-2345 lets us know that there is a problem. It is best if you leave your contact information and are willing to pursue a complaint (if it is a law or ordinance violation). When we receive timely information, we can respond directly and/or do follow up. Sometimes this results in a solution (or at least a mitigation of the issues), but at minimum it helps to better allocate our resources…and we can’t do anything about a problem that we don’t know anything about!

2. Please report any traffic concerns to our website at:…/trafficenforcement.cfm

Thank you, and let me know if you have any questions or feedback for me or my team!”

–Captain Jason Freedman

You can view the full Midtown District report here.

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