SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – People in the McKnight and Bay neighborhoods of Springfield may have noticed some increased police activity on Friday. But the officers and police dogs weren’t searching the area for suspects; they were looking for trash, mattresses, unregistered cars, and other violations of city ordinances. The sweep, conducted by the department’s ordinance unit, resulted in 76 citations being issued against property owners.
According to a news release sent to 22News by Mayor Domenic Sarno’s office, the streets that were targeted in this sweep were: Andrew St., Burr St., Cambridge St., Dawes St., Kenyon St., Mapledell St., and Oak Grove Ave. Police walked through the neighborhood, talking to residents and hearing their concerns about blight in their neighborhood.
Mayor Sarno says that this is an effort that began early in his administration, and is something that he personally considers important. “The ‘Flex Squad’ not only deals with quality-of-life issues, but sometimes these proactive attacks can nip in the bud other negative activities, as well as involve other city departments to assist in tackling some problems.
The sweep comes one week after Springfield’s Clean Cities program and a youth work crew from ROCA dismantled a small “tent city” along the Chicopee River that local residents had been complaining about. Three dump truck loads full of tents, mattresses, shopping carriages, bottles, trash, and debris were hauled away from the encampment.