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Hillsborough Sheriff's Unit Formed To Combat Non-Fatal Gun Violence

 Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister announces the formation of a unit that will combat non-fatal shootings in the county on July 21, 2020.
Hillsborough County Sheriff Chad Chronister announces the formation of a unit that will combat non-fatal shootings in the county on July 21, 2020.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office now has a team specifically aimed at reducing gun violence in the county.

During a news conference Wednesday, Sheriff Chad Chronister announced the formation of the Gunfire Response Investigations Team... or GRIT.

Chronister said the unit, which was formed on June 28, will consist of four deputies, four detectives, and a supervisor who will investigate non-fatal shootings.

"Gun violence in any community should never be acceptable," Chronister said. "Recognizing the increasing national and local trends, we are initiating a proactive approach to combat and reduce gun violence in our community through the formation of the GRIT squad.

The sheriff said the unit will share information with other agencies — including the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives — to identify links between firearms use and other crimes, including drug-related violence.

"Through the partnership we have with our state and local prosecutors, we will ensure that these criminals are no longer able to inflict fear and violence on our streets, in our neighborhoods, and the community we share," Chronister said.

In a news release, the sheriff's office pointed to an increasing number of gun-related crimes.

Non-fatal shootings increased from 44 in 2019 to 72 in 2020. As of July 1, there have been 34 non-fatal shootings in unincorporated Hillsborough County.

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