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Police chief after violent weekend: 'We can't be so quick to gun violence'

Posted at 5:02 PM, Jul 25, 2016

CINCINNATI -- To say it was a violent weekend in Cincinnati would be, for many, an understatement.

Eleven people were shot in a series of weekend shootings that shook five Cincinnati neighborhoods, and, while police have not found a link between them, they are asking for everyone in the city to actively resist violent behavior.

City Manager Harry Black said, despite no apparent connection, it’s imperative investigators put the pieces together.

“There are no discernible patterns,” Black told WCPO Monday. “The incidences were very distributed throughout the city, and the victims and the perpetrators that we’ve been able to identify up to this point were not showing on any of our watch lists.”

With no apparent connection, the question now is why?

Black said investigators believe most of the shootings revolved around personal feuds.

“The vast majority of the shootings were of personal conflict nature,” Black said.

Cincinnati Police Chief Eliot Isaac stressed the importance of conflict resolution.

“We need people not to be so prone to use a gun when these conflicts do occur,” Isaac said. “So, conflict resolution — de-escalation, not on our part, but society as a whole can’t be so quick to resort to gun violence.”

Even still, Isaac also said he already has multiple targeted enforcement initiatives in place, which he said have helped reduce the number of shootings and homicides compared to this time last year.

 

Members of the Cincinnati Human Relations Commission were in Millvale over the weekend, near where two people were shot and two others killed outside a bar early Saturday morning. The group passed out flyers with resources for finding jobs, counseling and support. 

Pastor Peterson Mingo says his goal is to promote change by helping people change their situation and that advocates worked 35 hours over the weekend going around neighborhoods impacted by the violence. 

“People want to change," Mingo said. "People don’t want their neighborhood to be one where everybody says (there's) nothing but trouble out there, nothing but shooting.”

Ultimately, Isaac said the public can offer the most assistance by being good witnesses and offering information to the police, stressing anonymity is almost always an option.

“When these things do happen, they can come forward and give us the information. They can call Crimestoppers. They can remain anonymous,” Isaac said.

Black echoed Isaac, saying, “The police department needs your support. We need to know what you know.”

WCPO reporter John Genovese contributed to this report.