RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) – Following a violent year in the City of Richmond, Police Chief Gerald Smith shared an update on crime statistics from 2021.

Chief Smith’s report to the community included crime trends in the capital city and an update on Operation Red Ball, a special project targeting violent criminals and focusing on getting firearms off of Richmond’s streets. In November, Richmond reached an unwanted benchmark with 71 homicides since the start of 2021 – the highest number of homicides in 15 years. We reported at the time that of those homicides, 75% were shooting deaths, according to police data.

In December, the Richmond Coalition of Police announced results of a survey that found 96% of the officers who are part of the coalition said they have lost confidence in Smith’s ability to lead Richmond’s Police Department. The coalition called for Smith’s immediate resignation.