BUFFALO, N.Y. — A recent rash of violence has rattled the city of Buffalo.
Buffalo Police say three people are dead and four are injured after two shootings.
Police responded to the 100 block of Ashley Street after 5 a.m. Thursday to a house they describe as an operating drug house.
They then found three people inside who appeared to be shot.
Police say the three died on scene in what appears to be a targeted shooting.
The deputy police commissioner says the street is no stranger to violence.
"That area has been plagued by violence for many, many years,” said Joseph Gramaglia, the BPD deputy commissioner. “It's an area that the city and the police department has invested a lot of resources in. Community policing efforts, as well as some enforcement efforts. We have, over the last month, through our New York State Gun Involved Violence Elimination — the GIVE grant — the mayor has authorized the use of further expenditures through that grant, and we have been using a lot of hotspot details in very specific areas and performing a lot of additional custom notifications on identified persons."
There was also a shooting off Hickory Street at JFK Park Wednesday night.
Police say four people were shot: an 8-year-old, a 14-year-old, a 21-year-old and a 24-year-old.
The 21-year-old is in serious condition and the other three were treated and released from the hospital.
Buffalo Police are looking into the possibility of more than one shooter involved in this shooting.
Gramaglia says this shooting appeared to be targeted as well, but no one has come forward to provide any leads yet in this case.
"Nobody can make you that mad to come and shoot up a park where you know innocent people are at," said Edwin Wilson, of Buffalo. "No violence is good but to put innocent people in the way of your problems is not good."
Gramaglia says officers are working to get guns off the streets.
"In 2021 alone, we are about 48% higher in gun arrests than we were last year and about 28% higher than our three-year average,” he said. “We're taking a lot of guns off our streets and when you take more guns off the streets, that means more guns are coming in to the area or they're being made more available through other methods.”
Wilson, though, believes authorities could be doing more.
"The police have to get people more comfortable with talking to them, instead of at them,” he said. “They need to be comfortable with talking with the police, and I think if they really put their effort in being in the neighborhoods and not focusing on traffic and the dirt bike riders and everything … Focus on the crime. The crime is the biggest problem in the city.”
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