NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — New Haven leaders say an uptick in violence in the city is due in part to the continued effects of the pandemic and the onset of the return to some sense of normalcy. The recent uptick has neighbors on edge.
New Haven Police say the first few months of 2021 have been rough: 13 shootings and seven homicides in the first six weeks. Most recently, a double shooting Monday night left one person in critical condition and another stable. It’s the fourth shooting since May 1.
New Haven Police have been working on these cases and trying new and effective ways to mitigate the new concerns with the uptick.
“As mayor, I think it’s vital for us as a team to be able to respond, to keep our communities safe,” Mayor Justin Elicker said. “It’s the baseline of expectations that people feel safe in their communities, and the trauma that this brings to our neighborhoods is significant.”
Mayor Elicker told News 8 he has a plan, and part of that plan is a shooting task force to solve some of the shootings.
Also part of the plan – Project Longevity. It includes a team going into the communities and connecting with at-risk residents in hopes of getting people who may be involved in violent activity on a productive path by connecting them with community resources and job opportunities.
“Ultimately we have a short-term plan, but the long-term plan is to provide people with the resources they need to be productive citizens of society,” the mayor added.
Assistant Chief Karl Jacobson with New Haven Police says the work only continues.
“We’re gonna amp it up a little. When the violence increases our efforts increase and we want to get ahead of it…We’re gonna put officers in areas that we think could lead to retaliatory shootings; we wanna be there before it happens.”
Hoping the efforts lead to a better sense of safety in the Elm City.
“Every city around the nation is seeing an uptick in violence and last year was a tough year,” Mayor Elicker explained. “As we enter summer, summer is typically a season where people are outside and we see an increase in violence, but we are very proactive in addressing it.”
New Haven Police are looking for help and answers in the shooting on Forbes Avenue. If you know anything, you are asked to contact the police department at 866-888-TIPS. You can remain anonymous.