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Gov. Whitmer Announces Operation Safe Neighborhoods Reaches New Milestone with More Than 450 Illegal Guns Off the Street


August 29, 2023



Gov. Whitmer Announces Operation Safe Neighborhoods Reaches New Milestone with More Than 450 Illegal Guns Off the Street


LANSING, Mich. -- Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced that over 450 illegal guns have been taken off the streets as part of Operation Safe Neighborhoods. Since the operation began, law enforcement officials have conducted 4,145 check-ins with felony offenders, leading to 450illegal guns taken off the street. During sweeps, officers have also recovered illegal drugs and ammunition.  


“As a former prosecutor, protecting public safety is a top priority,” said Governor Whitmer. “With Operation Safe Neighborhoods, we have taken 450 illegal guns before they could be used in the commission of a crime. The budget I recently signed includes the largest investment we have made in public safety since taking office—totaling $1.5 billion since I took office. Earlier this year, I signed three commonsense gun violence prevention laws establishing universal background checks, safe storage requirements, and extreme risk protection orders. We will keep working together to reduce gun violence and save lives.” 


Operation Safe Neighborhoods is a statewide crack down on crime aimed at reducing gun violence by getting illegal guns off the street and out of the hands of people who cannot legally be in possession of a gun due to prior criminal history.


Nearly one in three reported violent crimes in Michigan involve a firearm. This initiative builds on Governor Whitmer’s MI Safe Communities program that she launched in 2021 to invest in local police, get illegal guns off the street, and fund expanded opportunities in jobs, education, and the justice system. 


About Operation Safe Neighborhoods


MDOC parole and probation agents teamed up with local law enforcement across the state and have been conducting enhanced compliance checks on probationers and parolees who are legally prohibited from possessing a firearm. 


There are roughly 32,000 probationers and 8,500 parolees in the state, of which 20 percent have been convicted previously of a gun crime. These individuals are supervised by more than 1,000 MDOC parole and probation agents. The plan the department devised and implemented is aimed at focusing on high-risk individuals who have weapons possession in their criminal history that could be used to commit further crime.


Governor Whitmer’s Record Breaking Public Safety Investments


 Since taking office, Governor Whitmer has worked closely with local leaders, law enforcement officers, and community organizations to ensure people feel safe in their neighborhoods. The governor has signed five balanced, bipartisan budgets, each making record investments to help communities fund local law enforcement departments and hire more first responders.


The FY2024 budget includes:


  • $171.5 million in public safety grants, benefitting communities across the state.
  • $18.2 million to provide in-service training to licensed law enforcement officers.
  • $10 million toward leveraging the State Police Training Academy to serve as a criminal justice training hub to support realistic, multi-disciplinary training opportunities for law enforcement agencies across the state.
  • $9 million to run a Michigan State Police Trooper Recruit School, graduating an anticipated 50 new recruits.
  • $6.8 million to establish the Office of Community Violence Intervention Services to partner with community-based organizations already working to reduce violent incidents.
  • $2.9 million to implement gun violence prevention policies.