10 questions about Dothan police crackdown answered

Here’s what we know about this operation that had been promised from the city’s chief.
Dothan Police Chief Steve Parrish announces results of crime crackdown on  September 21, 2020.
Dothan Police Chief Steve Parrish announces results of crime crackdown on September 21, 2020.(WTVY)
Published: Sep. 21, 2020 at 8:51 PM CDT
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DOTHAN, Ala. (WTVY) -Dothan police officers flooded the streets for three days to reduce gun violence. Here’s what we know.

Does the crackdown have a code name?

Yes. Chief Steve Parrish dubs it “Operation Clean Sweep.” Phase one began Thursday afternoon about 5 o’clock and ended Sunday morning at one o’clock.

How many people have police arrested?


What charges do they face?

Most significant is the arrest of a second suspect in the murder of a sleeping woman on September 6. Others apprehended face various charges.

How many firearms have been confiscated?

There have been 31 seized. Three of those have been confirmed as stolen, though others could have also been stolen. Serial numbers have been removed from them. Federal authorities may also pursue weapons charges against some suspects.

Did police confiscate drugs?

Yes, including crack cocaine and crystal meth.

How long has this operation been planned?

Chief Parrish announced September 11 there would be a crackdown on gun crime, but said on Monday that Operation Clean Sweep had been planned since before that announcement.

Is gun crime in Dothan increasing?

Yes. Firearm assaults are expected to double this year compared to 2019. Parrish said in a significant number of those cases victims have refused to cooperate with investigators. There have been four murders in 2020. Reports of gunfire where nobody is struck is also up, though Parrish said since beginning of Operation Clean Sweep there have been no complaints of shots fired.

What areas of Dothan have been targeted?

Several neighborhoods, though Parrish specifically mentioned what is referred to as Ford Country where a teen was recently shot to death and other violent crimes have occurred.

What methods did police use during the crackdown?

Parrish will not disclose specifics due to officer safety and other concerns. However, he indicated much of the crackdown’s success is because veteran officers with strong community ties are utilized.

Is Operation Clean Sweep complete?

No. Parrish said officers will be back in force soon.

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