'Gravely concerning:' 15 kids injured, killed in Milwaukee gun violence over 2 month period
MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- An alarming trend in the city of Milwaukee: kids increasingly becoming victims of gun violence. The city’s Office of Violence Prevention says more than a dozen have been shot since April 1.
Just this week, a 17-year-old and a 12-year-old were injured in separate shootings.
“The pandemic did not slow down the level of gun violence that we began the year,” said Reggie Moore, the Office of Violence Prevention’s injury and violence prevention director.
Moore says in just the last two months, 15 minors have been injured or killed in shootings.
“This is something that is gravely concerning to us as a city and to our entire community,” Moore said.
Moore says with people being forced to stay home and unemployment rates skyrocketing, domestic violence rates are up. On April 27 five people, including a 14-year-old, 16-year-old and 17-year-old, were killed in a domestic violence shooting.
Moore says another part of the problem is kids are home more and getting a hold of guns.
“There was a significant increase in gun purchases as the pandemic began and so there are a lot more homes with firearms in them,” Moore said. “And so children have obviously had to be home much more.”
The Milwaukee Police Department put out a PSA last month, offering free gunlocks to anyone, no questions asked. You can pick one up at any MPD district.
Meanwhile, as safer at home restrictions are lifted, the Office of Violence Prevention will be able to get back in to the community doing more in-person interaction.
“Now that we have access to PPE and proper training, we will be engaging in a lot more outreaching heading into June and beyond,” Moore said.
Moore hopes that will help make it a more peaceful summer.