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All federal agents from Operation Legend leave Kansas City

September 23, 2020 GMT

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — More than 200 federal agents assigned to the anti-crime task force known as Operation Legend have left Kansas City, authorities announced Wednesday.

Kansas City was the first city where agents from several federal law enforcement agencies were sent to work with local law enforcement to combat violent crime, and the effort was later expanded to eight other U.S. cities.

Operation Legend was named for 4-year-old LeGend Taliferro, who was shot and killed while he slept in Kansas City in June. President Donald Trump and U.S. Attorney General William Barr said the nationwide crackdown on violent crime was needed to reduce spiking crime rates in the nine cities.

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U.S. Attorney Tim Garrison in Kansas City said in a statement Wednesday that Operation Legend was always meant to be a short-term operation. But he said strategies implemented under the program will remain.

Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas said in a statement that creating a safer community also requires prevention, intervention, and clearance of cases, and as long as children are being killed and the city approaches record homicide numbers, “we have far, far more work to do.”

Garrison and city officials plan a news conference Monday to discuss the impact of Operation Legend and the next steps in combating violent crime.