The Cook County Sheriff’s Office, which has been working in the 15th District since June on its Chicago Initiative, hosted a Sheriff’s Toy Handout on Dec. 19, at the Academy School for Performing Arts and the Kiddie Korral Academy in Austin. 

The initiative seeks to decrease crime and increase community engagement. 

“So far we’ve seen around a 40 percent reduction in homicides and nearly 30 percent reduction in shootings year-over-year,” a spokesperson with the Sheriff’s office said. 

“The Sheriff has prioritized community engagement with events at schools, churches and community organizations.”