The movement to defund police ignores the fact that fewer officers on the streets will reduce proactive policing. In fact, cities that increase their police presence and proactive law enforcement see an overall reduction in crime. For example, consider New York city under the Rudy Giuliani administration.
During Giuliani's term, the NYPD started an aggressive crackdown on relatively small crimes. This crackdown sent a powerful message of law and order.
Law professor Paul Cassel wrote a research paper on the decline of pro-active policing and its effects:
"Explaining the Recent Homicide Spikes in U.S. Cities: The 'Minneapolis Effect' and the Decline in Proactive Policing."Source
"I think what Minneapolis is seeing is the same thing we’re seeing all over the country," Paul Cassell, a professor at S.J. Quinney College of Law at the University of Utah, told Minneapolis news outlet WCCO. "We’re seeing a reduction in proactive policing, and as a result of that homicide and shootings are skyrocketing all over the country."Source
The fact is, major crime is on the rise. Defunding police departments removes tools and resources from law enforcement officers. Also, a reduced police presence equals more violent crime. Unfortunately, lower income neighborhoods are suffering the most.
These major cities need to take a lesson from New York under Giuliani. Invoke some of the policies that worked so well, fund police departments and get back to proactive policing.