BRENTWOOD - A recent decision by the Suffolk Police Department to remove three detectives from the Gang Task Force Unit has some residents concerned for their safety.

The detectives were removed from the unit as a cost-cutting measure.

Residents told News 12 Long Island they fear fewer police investigating gang activities could mean an increase in gang violence. Community members say they've lost about nine teens to gang violence over a two-year period .

Lenny Tucker, of the Brentwood Association of Concerned Citizens, says that he had a friend killed in gang violence and that once the gangs know the officers are gone, gang activity could return.

A spokesperson from the Suffolk District Attorney's office told News 12 Long Island that "the reassignment of police officers is a police department decision."