HAMDEN, Conn. (WTNH) – Two weekend shootings have left residents of the south end of Hamden shaken up.
Police say in both cases, what started out as an argument ended with someone pulling out a gun. Neighbors say violence is becoming a new normal, and they want it to stop.
Hamden police don’t think anyone is in danger. They believe the gunmen knew their victims, but bullets don’t have names on them. During the shooting at Goodrich and Dixwell, one of the bullets went through Chazmo’s Lounge into the bar area. No one inside was hurt.
“It is difficult to, in my opinion, raise my children in that environment. Butler Street is normally a quiet street,” said Greg Smith.
Smith told us he is trying to raise three little girls in a neighborhood where two people were shot over the weekend. One of the shootings happened on the Hamden/New Haven line. Police said 27-year-old Tyishound Matheney was shot to death at the intersection of Goodrich and Butler streets just after midnight on Sunday.
Investigators say Matheney had argued with someone before he was shot in the back.
Exactly 24 hours before that, a 43-year-old man was shot and injured less than half a mile up Goodrich Street, which too started with an argument, but this time inside a bar.
News 8 spoke with Mayor Curt Leng on Monday.
“Every time a gun is shot, there is a possibility that you’re going to have a random person that is reading a book in their room, is sleeping, is going to get killed,” Mayor Leng said.
Police say the cases don’t have much to do with each other, except both victims are from New Haven. Leng says investigators are zeroing in on the shooters.
For now, the town is stepping up patrols and street outreach. Councilman Justin Farmer says that’s a bandaid on top of what he calls a deep wound.
“We have prioritized policing, but we have not prioritized child development. We have not prioritized housing, we especially have not prioritized infrastructure,” Farmer said.
Farmer wants more investment in the south end. Leng says there’s money and plans in the pipeline.
“We have a renovation grant in for the Keefe Community Center and Station 2, that’s the fire station on Circular Avenue,” Leng said.
Leng says the town is waiting for the state to approve those grants for the fire station and the community center. He says if they don’t see that money by the end of the year, they’ll tap into federal funding for pandemic relief.