Action News Jax law and safety expert looks into ‘code of silence’ in high-crime communities

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Action News Jax’s Alicia Tarancon looked into why communities on the northside are reluctant to come forward after a shooting and what needs to be done in order to help solve these crimes.

Neighbors at the Calloway Cove Apartments awoke to news of a woman and two men killed overnight inside the complex.

I tried to speak with neighbors at Calloway Cove Apartments after the deadly shooting.

Many remained tight-lipped over fear of retaliation.

“Because if you are seen, snitches get stitches,” Carson said.

Our law and safety expert Dale Carson told me he doesn’t believe in a “code of silence,” only that most people in high-crime areas like those on Moncrief Road and Ken Knight Drive won’t speak out to those they don’t trust.

“Eventually, people will talk to one another, and we’ll find out who did this and we’ll find out why. The difficulty is that it’s going to take 6 months, 3 months in order to resolve that and meanwhile everybody’s scared to death because there’s a bunch of killers out there,” Carson said.

Carson told us people don’t trust police officers and until that changes, tips will be few and far between.

He said it’s not just a problem with JSO but law enforcement departments across the country.

For example, he says, there are law enforcement officers and there are peace officers.

“A peace officer goes in, stops that mess and says, ‘Go home, and I know your mother and I’m going to tell your father. Pick that stuff up. Get out of here,’” Carson said.

Carson believes more crimes would get solved if the sheriff’s office had more “peace officers” to help bridge the gap and improve the relationships between the community and police.

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