HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — Hartford leaders and community members are trying to keep the city safe heading into the historically violent summer months.
The Hartford City Council and Hartford residents are searching for answers from police on their plans to help curb the recent increase of violence impacting the city.
“Sixteen homicides already and over 100 shootings and we are still talking about changing the laws,” Rev. Henry Brown said. “Here in Hartford, we are concerned because we know the summertime is coming and we know the gun violence spikes in Hartford in the summertime.”
Brown has been working with parents who have lost kids to gun violence on the streets. He’s been doing it for decades, and he says illegal guns need to be stopped.
“You know the ghost guns and the plastic guns and all of these guns that people have access to, illegally it shouldn’t be,” Brown said.
The City Council is looking for an action plan from police on how they will handle the traditional violent summer months, something in writing they can refer to residents.
“In the summer months, things happen outside of normal control, and this is just something that I would like to end my colleagues would like to see,” said Hartford Councilman Thomas J. Clark II (D). “We are tackling the challenge of gun violence on lots of fronts at once.”
Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin (D) previously spoke on the approach the city is taking to combat violence. A record number of 160 illegal guns were taken off the street in the first five months of this year and they are holding more people accountable with more arrests.
“They have been solving homicides at a very high rate, and they also dramatically increase the percentage the number of non-fatal shooting said they have solved, that is important because it sends a powerful message that there are consequences,” Bronin said.
Non-fatal shooting arrests are up 170% year to date. Brown said accountability extends from the person pulling the trigger all the way to Washington DC, and he hopes for tougher gun laws.
“Look, we are going to hold you accountable, you are going to be held accountable just like the politicians have to be held accountable,” Brown said. “We have to hold these people accountable with these guns. We know that not everyone has a right to a gun.”