New crime-fighting strategies to be discussed at town-hall meeting

New plans for helping to reduce an already declining crime rate will be unveiled at Pine Bluff Mayor Debe Hollingsworth’s monthly town hall meeting Monday at the Pine Bluff Convention Center. The event will start at 5:30 p.m.

Hollingsworth said Friday that interim Police Chief Jeff Hubanks will identify locations for new police department substations. Capt. Kelvin Hadley will speak on an enhanced bike patrol program. Other proposed steps to help cut crime will also be addressed, the mayor said, and Hubanks and Hadley will be available to answer questions from the public.

“I think people will be pleased to learn about what is being planned,” Hollingsworth said, “and we’re hoping to receive some public input as well.”

Also on the agenda is a recognition program for the four youths — Akelia Terrill Austin, Eddie Lee Bell, Madre Collins and Skylar Webb — who participated in the first mayor-for-a-day program in which they shadowed Hollingsworth and worked with her and her professional staff.

Other applicants for the program included Carl Johnson II, Darsalyn Hampton, Mar’Tavius Proctor, Yaronda Thomas, Devon Katoyama, Stephanie Williams, Bailey Marie Byrd, QuinDarius Chubb, Jordan A. Johnson, Brandy Brown, Garrison Wimberly, Carl Howard Nelson Jr., Edward Hudson III, Kaleb Humphrey, Keith James III, Travon Kelly, Tyree Lashaun Roberson, Brandon Farver, Takeiya Williams, Renee Little and Corinthia Dorn.

“I’m proud of this first group and look forward to this program becoming even bigger and better,” the mayor said.

Also on hand will be local boxer Donald Griffin, who is joining the police department.

City council members are invited to participate in the meeting along with the city’s department heads, who will receive public comments and questions.