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Gov. Whitmer Announces Operation Safe Neighborhoods Reaches New Milestone with More Than 550 Illegal Guns Off the Street


February 15, 2024



Gov. Whitmer Announces Operation Safe Neighborhoods Reaches New Milestone with More Than 550 Illegal Guns Off the Street 



LANSING, Mich. -- Today, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced that over 550 illegal guns have been taken off the streets as part of Operation Safe Neighborhoods. Since the operation began, law enforcement officials have conducted 5,331 check-ins with felony offenders, leading to 571 illegal 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. “By getting more than 550 illegal firearms out of the hands of criminals before they can be used in the commission of a crime, we are taking action to keep families and communities safe. Last year, I signed four commonsense gun violence prevention laws establishing protections for domestic violence survivors, 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 crackdown on crime aimed at reducing gun violence by getting illegal guns off the street and out of the hands of people who cannot legally possess 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 team up with local law enforcement across the state and conduct 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.


In April 2023, Governor Whitmer signed commonsense gun violence prevention bills that will establish universal background checks for all firearm purchases and safe storage requirements. In May 2023, Governor Whitmer signed bills establishing extreme risk protection orders in Michigan, ensuring police officers, health care professionals, and family members concerned about someone who may harm themselves or others can seek a court order to temporarily confiscate their firearms.  In November 2023, Govenor Whitmer signed bills disallowing convicted domestic abusers from owning firearms.


Governor Whitmer proposed the commonsense gun violence prevention legislation during her 2023 State of the State address and has worked with the Michigan Legislature, community groups, law enforcement, students and parents following the shooting at Michigan State University in February 2023 and the shooting at Oxford High School in November 2021 to get these commonsense measures that will reduce gun violence signed into law.