Fort Myers Police Chief, Derrick Diggs, recently sat down with HelloSWFL to discuss improvements within the department. Last year, the department started to make changes after receiving recommendations from The Freeh Report.
The Freeh Report was released in February 2017 and had 32 recommendations to help the Fort Myers Police address issues within the department.
The report was updated in May 2018. It showed exactly where the police department made changes.
“The good folks out there need to understand that we’re not the same department we were a year ago, two years ago, three years or four years ago. We are a different police department,” Diggs explained.
Chiefs Diggs said when the report initially came out, it was very harsh.
But after careful consideration, Chief Diggs and everyone in the department embraced the Freeh Report. He made a commitment to tackle it first hand.
FMPD completed 18 of the recommendations, and the department is working on the remaining 14.
“We did very well as far as reducing crime within the first year,” Chief Diggs shared. “We reduced our homicides by 33 percent, we reduced firearms assault by 50 percent, manslaughters by 100 percent.”
Overall, Chief said violent crime is going down, and the community is pleased.
Completing all of the recommendations will take a lot of hard work, and it will be costly.
Chief Diggs didn’t share how much all of it is going to cost but said: “it’s money well spent.”
Once they have checked all 32 recommendations off the list, Chief Diggs said they will continue maintaining them and working hard to keep the community’s trust.