Is more police presence a deterrent to people who commit serious crimes? That's what research done by one criminologist in Pennsylvania suggests.
Carnegie Mellon University Professor Daniel Nagin is convinced of his findings that better police presence will reduce crime.
"If the police are properly deployed, then their presence can have a substantial deterrent effect," says Professor Daniel Nagin.
In other words, stopping crimes before they happen is more effective than the threat of a lot of prison time.
"There's little evidence that makes punishments even more severe than they already are, has an incremental deterrent effect," says Nagin.
Ron Powe is a pastor at a church on Dodson Avenue. And he agrees with the research.
"When police are close by, they [people] are less likely to commit any crime. Most crimes are done undercover," says Ron Powe.
The city of Chattanooga is growing its budget to bring at least 40 more officers on the job by next spring or summer.
They must first finish their academy and field training before hitting the streets.
Ebony Moore is ready to see more officers and believes it will deter criminals.
"Yes, they would definitely be more fearful. They would be more aware of their surroundings and everything that they're doing," says Ebony Moore.
"If I had a police officer on every block, you're going to find it safer than if I had none. And with that being said, that can't be the only thing we do. We've got to deal with education and the prosecution," says Hamilton County Sheriff Jim Hammond.
Friday, we’re told once those 40 officers join the city of Chattanooga's police force next year, there will be 486 officers on their force.
By Jerry Askin