Mixer: LAPD focuses on South LA

friday mixer bannerThe Los Angeles Police Department says it’ll send dozens of elite officers into South LA in response to an increase in crime and reported gang violence.

August saw a big rise in homocides in the city, with about half of the 39 killings taking place in the neighborhoods there.

Police Chief Charlie Beck blamed a lot of the violence on an increase in gang crime.

This week alone saw a gang rivalry and retaliation at a funeral in the area – where shots were fired and one person died.

Yesterday, the driver of an SUV was shot, and his vehicle then crashed into a home near 50th and San Pedro.

Will the strategy work? And what’s going on with the crime rate… in cities all across the country, and right here in Los Angeles?

Jill Leovy is a crime reporter from the Los Angeles Times, and founded the Homicide Report in the newspaper, and wrote the book Ghettoside: A True Story of Murder in America.

Andrew Blankstein also reports on crime and law enforcement for NBC News.

Both joined us for the Friday Mixer.