NORTH LAS VEGAS -- Pamela Ojeda always knew she’d wear a badge one day.
"All I wanted to be as a little girl -- I wanted to be a police officer. I want to be out on the streets running around catching bad guys,” she said.
But she didn't know she'd wear the rank of police chief.
“Well, I didn't say the word chief. I always said, ‘If I was queen one day.’”
As the first woman to become police chief on North Las Vegas, she’s got a lot on her shoulders.
"You're always concerned for the safety of your community."
Especially now, after a violent November.
First, gang members shot up a house and killed 11-year-old Angie Erives.
Two weeks later, police say a teenager shot and killed 16-year-old Lamadre Harris after school.
Then gunmen shot two teenagers nearly two weeks ago.
Last week, a boyfriend shot and killed 17-year-old Indy Willis, according to police.
“It’s disheartening,” said Ojeda.
That’s how a lot of people feel. It was clear Wednesday night when dozens of frustrated North Las Vegas neighbors tried to get answers about how to solve the crime problem. But many of those people went home that night without answers.
Ojeda says there are plans in motion -- like putting more officers on the streets.
“We’re reconstructing our problem-solving unit, and they’re going to be back in full uniforms and marked patrol cars. So, they're going to be more visible in the community.
Ojeda says that means shorter response times. By the end of December, 26 new officers will hit the streets -- and more are on the way with a new academy class starting in January.
As for the officers already on patrol, they’ll get some help too.
"We're putting our k-9 patrol units back into the substation. So they'll be out there more visible -- assisting patrol more."
Ojeda says above all, it’s neighbors looking out for each other that can make a difference.
"We really want to get out there and not only inform the community about what's going on, but also educate on how they can participate and they can help themselves and help us better."