The Flint Police Department is asking for help as crime in the city increases.
“To me, it is getting worse,” Flint Police Chief Terence Green said.
Murders in Flint are up more than 40 percent since last year. Green said there's no doubt there's a violent crime problem in the city. He said they are working around the clock to reduce crime and find out who is responsible.
"We’ve identified these gang members as the drivers of crime,” Green said.
Deadly shootings, arsons and vehicle thefts are all on the rise.
Green believes Flint gangs and the number of new ones forming is a cause for concern, so they want extra help. That's why his department is also hoping Flint City Council will approve a three-month lease for a helicopter to deter crime.
“We need this piece of equipment to reduce this violent crime and break this cycle of violence," Green said.
The price tag would be about $304,000, according to Green. There is a committee meeting July 21 to decide if the measure should be given to council to vote on.
But a police chopper isn't the only thing Green is hoping to bring to the department, he's still looking to hire 20 new officers, but that’s another challenge.
"I would say we’re having difficulty in finding qualified officers. We’re not gonna sacrifice quality officers just to fill vacant positions,” Green said.
Months ago, Green predicted this was going to be a violent summer. He said they have all boots on the ground and they are constantly trying to combat and prevent crime. He believes they can still turn it around.
"I think it’s positive. I think we’re moving in the right direction,” Green said.