I-Team: New plan may put state troopers in Providence

TheProvidence Police Department and Rhode Island State Police might team up toassist in crime prevention in the city.

Ina detailed memo to his state troopers, Lt. Col. Michael Winquist said gunviolence has prompted Providence police to ask the state police for help on thecity's streets.

Thenew plan would make the partnership a "semi-permanent" Neighborhood ResponseTeam.

Accordingto the plan, state police would provide six troopers to the unit and Providencepolice would offer six officers too. The unit would work overnight from 7 5 a.m. beginning in January and ending in early September.

Accordingto the memo, troopers would work in both uniform and plain clothes and inmarked and unmarked cars. Two troopers would also be assigned to the ProvidencePolice Gun Task Force.

Detailsof the plan are still being discussed and would need union approval from bothRhode Island state troopers and Providence police.

Crimestatistics have remained flat year-to-year, and the number of murders hasdropped, which has many Providence policeofficers wondering why the state police are needed.

Someofficers who spoke to the NBC 10 I-Team on the condition of anonymity felt thepresence of state troopers in Providence implies they have failed to do theirjobs. Others, however, saw it differently and encouraged more police presenceon the streets.