Leonard Brown, Syracuse Police Department
On this episode of Working: Syracuse, we speak with police officer Leonard Brown, who has served on the force since 2011. About 18 months ago, he joined the elite Crime Reduction Team (CRT) within the Syracuse Police Department. With headquarters located on Erie Boulevard East, the CRT is a proactive, 12-man unit that has focused on fighting some of the city's toughest issues since 2005: drugs, guns, and gang violence.

Brown, one of just two officers of color in his unit, and his partner, Joel Dorchester, gear up to protect the community five days a week, from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. Violent crime in Syracuse has been declining — 21 homicides in 2017, the lowest number of violent deaths in five years. But in just one weekend in April, Syracuse saw three gang-related homicides. Brown works to protect the city's neighborhoods that struggle with gang activity, capturing guns and drugs, while combating negative views of the police force. He enjoys the physical nature of his work, which reminds him of what he loved about sports when he was younger. As a teenager, Brown lived for the thrill of scoring touchdowns. Now, he gets his adrenaline rush from putting on a different kind of uniform every day.