SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – Recent shootings are adding to what some are describing as a violent start to the year in Shreveport.
But, looking at statistics, Shreveport Police Chief Ben Raymond said his department has received fewer shots fired and shooting calls than four of the past five years.
“This isn’t something that we’re facing a crime pandemic,” said Raymond. “This is actually low compared to the last four years.”
Three of the year’s five reported homicides to date happened just last weekend. Raymond said it’s not uncommon for these spikes in criminal activity.
“And it’s not something, thank God, that we experience on a weekly basis,” he said.
Raymond said several factors can contribute to violent crime, including domestic disputes.
“I think that we have more people coming forward and admitting that they’re involved in domestic violence incidents because of better training, better education and people wanting to step up,” said Raymond. “There’s not such a stigma against someone saying, ‘Hey, I’ve been abused.'”
And when one shooting happens, he said there can often be a counter-attack.
“Where you have friends or family members that know who the suspect is, know who the suspects family is, and as opposed to giving that information to the police department, which is what they should do, they take matters into their own hands,” said Raymond.
Raymond said sharing anonymous tips through Crime Stoppers is crucial to cutting crime. He said every little bit can help detectives put pieces together to solve a case.
“If word on the street is such and such is involved, well our investigators may not have that information,” said Raymond. “So, bring it to our attention.”
Right now, Raymond said the department is focusing special operations on property crimes to take aim at reducing shootings in the city.
“By getting criminals off the street, you are going to at the same time reduce violent crimes,” said Raymond.
Raymond said the police department is still investigating two of the five homicides that have taken place in Shreveport this year.
If you have any information about criminal activity in the city, you can leave an anonymous tip through Crime Stoppers at (318) 673-7373 .