MILWAUKEE, WI – Violence in Milwaukee is increasing, and this week, the “Cream City” surpassed a long-standing homicide record.
As of November 6, Milwaukee tied the 1991 homicide rate with having 165 murders. The next day, the homicide rate had surpassed the 1991 record as two additional murders occurred.
Milwaukee's homicide rate surpasses 1991 recordhttps://t.co/Ekr6YVoe0X
— CBS 58 News (@CBS58) November 9, 2020
Common Council President Cavalier Johnson commented on the disturbing trend, likening the roads he passes by as being reminiscent of a graveyard:
“It’s painful to drive around, walk around some of our neighborhoods to see these makeshift memorials on roadsides, it’s like driving through a cemetery.”
Johnson said that this is not an issue police can solely alleviate, but that communities need to “step up” as well to address and curb the violence:
“Obviously you can’t have a police officer on every block, certainly can’t have one in every house. We need people in our community to step up, we need people in our community to say this is inappropriate behavior.”
Three fatal shootings during the weekend in Milwaukee have added to the city's homicide rate which hasn't been this high since 1991: https://t.co/x37ueOHOaz
— WLUK-TV FOX 11 (@fox11news) November 9, 2020
When it pertains to preventing violence, Johnson says that it all starts with life at home. Johnson stressed that families need to concentrate on cultivating an environment that promotes both employment and education:
“When folks have that, it creates stability in their lives, in their children lives, which spills out into the streets, it creates stability in our neighborhoods making them safer.”
Johnson pointed out that when conflict turns to violence, particularly in fatal instances, there is more than just one victim being affected. The Common Council president explained that real-world violence affects all those who knew and loved the victim:
“You’re not just hurting, potentially killing the person you are beefing with, you’re killing that person’s mom a little bit, you’re killing that person’s sister or brother.”
JUST IN: Milwaukee County medical examiner called to fourth homicide in less than 48 hours. https://t.co/sYhvqKWGq1
— FOX6 News (@fox6now) November 9, 2020
Johnson hopes that friends and families can begin having discussions regarding violence prevention:
“We need the people around them to do that, we need friends to do that including their moms and dads.”
Vanessa Maldanado is among those who can identify with the sentiments expressed by Johnson. On September 22, Maldanado’s brother, Jason Cleereman, was shot and killed following an altercation with a man on a bike along Holton Street and Brady Street.
Maldanado noted that she cannot process the grief over her brother’s killing, citing just how pointless his death was:
“I am so angry still I can’t even get to the point I can grief my brother’s death. It’s just so crazy and so senseless that that’s the first thing people think of is to have a gun and shoot somebody.”
Police have not located Cleereman’s killer. There is currently a $10,000 reward from CrimeStoppers for information leading to an arrest in the case.
Milwaukee's homicide record was set in 1991. The record for the county was set in 1993. Both records have been shattered in 2020. https://t.co/kwMplMpuR8
— FOX6 News (@fox6now) November 10, 2020
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Homicides skyrocket in Richmond as violent crime also jumps – and they talked about defunding the police
October 9, 2020
RICHMOND, VA – During the last quarter of this year, the Richmond Police Department in Virginia is reporting that they have seen a dramatic increase in homicides compared to the same time frame last year. The homicide rate increased by 60%.
Gerald Smith, the Richmond Police Chief, who has been with the agency for three months, provided the update to the community for which he serves on October 7th. Smith compared all of the crime data and trends from July 1st, the date he was sworn in, through the end of September.
“The most concerning is we’ve seen some small arguments escalate into violent acts and it’s something that baffles the mind,” Smith explained. “We’ve also seen the historical beefs between communities and neighborhoods coming back and forth.”https://t.co/DuhHP5hGlL
— WTVR CBS 6 Richmond (@CBS6) October 7, 2020
“Violent crimes – the totals are up four percent. That’s a total of 14 additional instances compared to 2019.”
The city also saw increases in aggravated assaults and robberies. Robberies were up by six percent and aggravated assaults by four percent. However, reported incidents of sexual batteries fell by 53 percent.
When it came to homicides, the city saw a large increase by percentage. In the third quarter of 2019, the city reported 15 total. For the same quarter for 2020, homicides rose by 60% for a total of 24. Smith said:
“The most concerning is we’ve seen some small arguments escalate into violent acts and it’s something that baffles the mind. We’ve also seen the historical beefs between communities and neighborhoods coming back and forth.”
In addition to increases in homicides, Smith reported that they have also seen an increase in firearms being stolen from vehicles. In 2020, there were 376 firearms stolen from their owners, over half of those were taken during vehicle burglaries. Smith reported:
“A lot of times people break into cars and they steal the car. Guess what they find when they’re in the car? They find a gun. But, primarily 176 guns taken from vehicles were the primary offense were to break into the vehicle.”
— Roberto Roldan (@ByRobertoR) October 7, 2020
Smith is rightly concerned with the stolen firearms ending up in a violent felon’s hands. He said:
“This is what we don’t want to happen. We don’t want guns in the hands of violent offenders and felons.”
Despite the increases of crime in some areas, Smith was able to report reductions in crimes in others. For instance, the total number of property crimes was reduced by 13% compared to the same time frame from last year.
Reported burglaries and thefts also saw decreases. Smith believes that his reduction in crime is thanks to the hard work of the men and women in the 4th precinct, specifically the commander of the area, Captain Daniel Minton.
Minton did not want to take full credit for the reduction of crime in his area and also praised the officers and the community for helping with the effort. He said:
“The biggest contribution I would say to that is the men and women of the 4th precinct. It’s also the community.”
Minton than provided an example of how the community engaged with the police department after they had seen a picture of a man wanted for vehicle theft. The flyer of the suspect was posted on the Nextdoor app. Minton said:
“[The suspect] stole two cars in one day. We put out the wanted poster and sure enough the guy saw him around the Diamond, called it in, and watched us apprehend him.”
Smith and Minton than spoke about the efforts of their department in engaging with the community and assured everyone that officers were still eager to do so. He said:
“Even in these uncertain time [police officers] are still excited to go out and reduce crime in the City of Richmond and keep people safe.”
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