Several local law enforcement agencies took part in a 'comprehensive' K-9 sweep of Malden's 'playgrounds, parks and other public areas' Friday night, as officials said they continue to proactively respond to the city's recent spike in violent crime.
Malden Square, the Malden Center T stop, Miller Park, Tartikoff Park, Roosevelt Park, South Broadway Park, the Linden School Lot and Park, Ferryway School/Park and Lincoln Commons were all targeted in the after hours sweep, during which officers cleared the closed parks of loiterers until 1 a.m. Saturday.
While no arrests were made, Mayor Gary Christenson said that the activity sent an important message: “we will not tolerate violence in our community.”
He emphasized that the sweep was carried out with the support of the city council and Malden Police Chief James Holland, who planned the action last week.
“It was...to let people know we are taking what's happened seriously,” Christenson said. “This is just one of several (crime fighting) initiatives we're looking at, beyond what was introduced at the public safety meeting.”
Residents can expect more of these kind of sweeps in the future, he said. One officer reported that the police were cheered on by residents near Newland St. as the sweep was as underway.
K-9 units were assisted by officers and other K-9 units from Everett, Chelsea, Medford, Revere, Saugus, Somerville and Winchester, with support from State Police, the Metro North Gang Task Force and Essex and Middlesex Sheriffs' Offices. The State Police Air Wing helicopter patrol was on standby during the effort.
The city incurred no expenses as a result of the raid, as all participating agencies donated their resources and manpower, Christenson said.
You can read the city's official release online.