CINCINNATI - It's a sound that has become all too common on Cincinnati streets: the wail of police responding Sunday night to yet another act of violence.
"Five people shot," said Cincinnati Police Chief James Craig. "More madness in the city, in Avondale. This has got to stop."
He is drawing a line in the sand.
"I want to eradicate the problem," he told the news media Monday afternoon.
Chief Craig announced a 'call for action' from the community.
"To have the good people who live in these neighborhoods to come out, North Avondale and Avondale, walk with us, work with us, so that we can run this violence epidemic out," he said.
That's a idea than some residents say is easier said than done.
"It's going to be repercussions," said Thaddeus Thomas.
Thomas is an Avondale parent who was moving out of his apartment at Virginia Woods, the locus of Sunday night's shootings. He knows the streets aren't always friendly to people who snitch on criminals.
"(The police) leave you in your community all by yourself again," he said. "By yourself. You know what I'm sayin'?"
Left, he says, to deal with retribution from the street. In order to solve that Thomas says the beat cops need to build better relationships with the community.
"If you got a lot of trust in 'em, you more liable to go up to them and tell them what's going on," he said.
Case in point: One of Thomas' neighbors who wanted to be anonymous. He says he shouldn't have to tell the police anything "because it ain't the community's job to do their job."
He's also a parent, one who says he won't leave his family's protection to a uniform.
"That's my main thing, is to keep my kid safe," he said. "And I'm going to do it any way I can. So if somebody shot at my kid, best believe I will shoot back."
Likewise, 75-year-old Mary Hill is not afraid to confront troubled youth. But the minister of St. Luke Primitive Baptist Church does it with love.
"We are concerned," she said. "Don't ignore 'em. Let 'em know. And then I always remind them, how would they like someone to get rid of they mother or father or sister or brother? Keep that in mind."
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