BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore police addressed the surge in violence in the city Tuesday after a 5-year-old was shot Monday.
The 5-year-old girl was taken to a local hospital after being shot in west Baltimore Monday evening. She was taken to surgery and is expected to survive as of Monday night. The girl is the sister of 7-year-old Taylor Hayes, who was shot and killed in July.
Police and police experts talked Tuesday on what could break the cycle.
Police tried in October to drive down violence by putting more uniforms on the streets. In so many of these cases, officers said, they see the same trigger-pullers and the same victims.
The yellow line went up on Halloween afternoon when someone fired into a Hollins Street barbershop, hitting but not killing two men inside.
Ten days later, gunfire on York Road left one man dead.
A week after that on Lexington Street, one woman dead. And two days later, the body count climbed again on the corner of Dolphin and McCulloh where someone gunned down a man just before dark.
Monday brought the shooting of a five-year-old girl who was caught in the crossfire.
“It just goes to show you, some individuals don’t care who gets hurt. At the end of the day, when people pull guns with reckless abandon, and they don’t care who gets hurt, that’s an issue,” said Gary Tuggle, Baltimore interim police commissioner.
Tuggle said 97 people who survived gunshot wounds this year, got shot again in separate incidents.
With the latest surge in violence in mid-October, he ordered officers who work desk jobs out onto the streets to patrol.
Police held a visible presence Tuesday night, this time, walking through the Sandtown neighborhood where Monday’s shooting happened. They are urging the community to partner with law enforcement.
“What we have to continue to realize as we talk about the violent epidemic is that hurt people hurt people. And if we don’t deal with the trauma that our children are dealing with, then we’re going to see this cycle continue,” said T.J. Smith, law enforcement expert.
After the walk, police chaplains prayed with Amy’s great-grandmother.
“I think this should be it right here. It should have been it, but this is enough and I ain’t never think I would have to go through this,”
Smith said the bottom line is everyone has to get real tough, real quick.
“We have to start changing the minds of young people who think it’s okay to take a gun and harm somebody else,” Smith said.
There have been 275 murders in Baltimore this year, with two dozen in the last month.