Oakland credits drop in violent crime to "ceasefire" program

The city of Oakland has seen a drop in violent crime over the past six years. Oakland police and community leaders say the decline is due in large part, to something called the "ceasefire" program which started in Oakland in 2012.

As part of the program, church, community members and police would host regular meetings with people, especially teens and young adults, who were considered at-risk, from neighborhoods dealing with gang violence.

In addition to those one on one meetings, the program helps connect people with social services, GED programs and drug and alcohol addicition services.

Six years later, Oakland police are touting the results of a report that show the program has played a big role in bringing down the crime rate.

In 2012, Oakland had more than 700 shootings, 93 of them deadly.

This year, the rate's been cut in half, with more than 300 shootings and 63 deaths.

While proponents of the ceasefire program say there is still a lot of work to do to make the community safer, Oakland is now getting national recognition for the progress that's been made.

Police representatives from New York and Chicago plan to visit Oakland to learn about the program.

As part of the study, researchers compared the violent crime rate in Oakland to 12 other Northern California cities including Sacramento, San Francisco and Richmond. 

From 2012 to 2018, only two of them saw a significant decline in their violent crime rate over the past six years.

Supporters of the ceasefire program say it's further proof their strategy is working and that the city should continue it.