RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN)–Law enforcement agencies across the Triangle were out interacting with the community Tuesday as part of National Night Out.

CBS 17 spoke to both Durham Police Chief Patrice Andrews and Raleigh Police Chief Estella Patterson about efforts they hope will make their communities safer.

In April, Andrews announced the creation of a second specialized unit focused on violent crime. CBS 17 asked how effective the unit has been.

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“I can tell you the unit itself has been very proactive,” Andrews said. “Certainly I don’t’ want to jinx what we’ve had, but I think there has been- or we’ve seen- at least a little bit of a decrease for a short span of time.”

Next month, the department plans to launch ShotSpotter technology, which detects gunshots and alerts police. 

“I will say to our community that we are not rushing this, yes we have a target date for deployment and go live of September 15th, but certainly we want to make sure that we’re doing it right, make sure we’re getting community involvement,” Andrews said.

In Raleigh, Patterson begins her second year as chief.

“Since I’ve arrived here in Raleigh, we really have made it a point to get to know this community, our officers are out more, they’re interacting with our community which is exactly what we want to see,” Patterson said.

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In late June, CBS 17 reported Raleigh Police data showed a 34% increase in shootings compared to the same time last year.

That was before five people were shot in one week in July. CBS 17 asked Patterson what’s being done so that Raleigh doesn’t finish the year with more shootings than last year.

“We’ve been very strategic about making sure that we’re really targeting priority offenders and priority locations, those areas where we’re seeing repeat crime, officers spend lot of time there, but we’re also using a lot of intelligence our information to know what is going on,” Patterson said.

Patterson said license plate readers are another tool police use to help catch suspects who flee a scene. She said there are about five readers right now, but there will soon be 25 cameras in target locations as part of a grant program with Axon and Flock cameras.