It's called the Public Order initiative and the objective is to target violent crime in downtown. Under the initiative, plain-clothed officers seek anyone committing a crime in the downtown area. Austin Police Commander, Jason Dusterhoft, says it is working. "When you have that kind of drastic contrast where you have officers put in one to focus on one objective which is lowering crime truly works," said Dusterhoft. According to statistics released to FOX 7 by Austin police individual robberies are down 100 percent when comparing month to date numbers from February 2012 to this past February. Police are crediting the public order initiative. However, some feel police are targeting the homeless.
"No we're going after the problem. This is anybody down here that does anything that is against the law. This is zero tolerance. That means a college kid. That means a mom and dad, someone that's homeless perhaps. That means anybody," said Dusterhoft. "We want everybody to come downtown and have a good time, but on the same token we're not going to allow people to urinate in public, we're not going to allow people to sleep where they shouldn't be sleeping. We're not going to allow people to assault people. We're not going to allow people to solicit things that they shouldn't be soliciting for."
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