Fort Worth police stepping up security for this week's Main Street Arts Festival

Posted Tuesday, Apr. 16, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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FORT WORTH -- Fort Worth police are increasing their numbers of uniformed and undercover officers working in and around this week's Main Street Arts Festival, to augment security after Monday's Boston bombings, Police Chief Jeff Halstead said Tuesday.

Figures were not immediately available on the numbers of police who typically staff the hugely popular downtown event, or what the increase will be.

Police made the decision Monday, Halstead said. The city's Fire Department also is increasing its typical numbers of emergency medical technicians and firefighters who will be walking around Main Street, to help elevate security presence, Halstead said.

"We have an extensive security plan in place," Halstead said. "It'll be very successful."

The majority of the expense of staffing Main Street is paid for by Main Street, Halstead said.

The city works with the FBI and federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms to assess intelligence issues each year for Main Street, Halstead said. Police consulted with the FBI special agent in charge after the Boston attack, Halstead said.

Other security that works Main Street includes Sundance Square and XTO Energy.

The police also released fourth-quarter crime statistics for the city. Overall crime was down 5.9 percent in the quarter, and off 7 percent for the year.

"Those are great numbers for our city," Halstead said.

Residential burglary was off sharply, which Halstead attributed to better intelligence focused on repeat offenders and the city's strong volunteer Citizens on Patrol program.

Forcible rapes were up 13 percent for the year. Seventy percent of victims knew their offenders, Halstead said.

"We want to emphasize, we have no serial offenders in our community," Halstead told City Council members Tuesday.

Scott Nishimura, (817) 390-7808

Twitter: @JScottNishimura

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