Mayoral candidates engage in war of words over crime

D. Michael Collins (left) and Mike Bell.

Four shooting incidents in a span of 48 hours has led to a war of words between the two men vying to be mayor of Toledo.

Incumbent Mike Bell says the Glass City is safe. "This is a safe city; crime is down in the city of Toledo," Mr. Bell said.

Mayor Bell's challenger, Councilman Michael Collins disagrees. "We are not a safer city and to pretend that we are doesn't make it so," Mr. Collins said.

Collins, who was a Toledo police officer for nearly thirty years, has often criticized Mayor Bell for low staffing levels in the police department. He has vowed to make changes if he wins. "We will have a completely revamped police department, we will go to a delivery system that is communicative and responsive," Mr. Collins said.

Mayor Bell counters that Collins's suggestions are not necessary as the city has been commended by state and federal law enforcement agencies for its crime fighting strategies. "What I am hearing from people in the state and nationally is that Chief Diggs is doing an unbelievable job under adverse circumstances," Mr. Bell said.


You can watch the two candidates debate live on Monday, Oct. 7 from 7-8 p.m. on WNWO and The debate is being brought to you by WNWO and WSPD and will be moderated by Jim Blue and Fred Lefebvre. Please send us your questions for the candidates by sharing them below or emailing them to