IT DOES AFFECT YOU!
Police give away too much of their power when they allow shooting victims to dictate the extent of investigations, said Philadelphia Police Lt. Ray Evers, a department spokesman who spent 10 years in investigations. Philadelphia police go to a judge and get a search warrant when victims refuse access, he said. Police need to verify that the evidence matches what the victim is saying.
“It’s not his decision,” Evers said of the victim. “What if another guy’s dead in the closet? What if there’s guns in there?”
Philadelphia police continue to investigate using intelligence, street information — anything they can get their hands on.
“Anytime we have a shooting, we’re worried about retaliation, because that’s never the end of it,” Evers said. “If you have 10 shootings, there’s going to be 20.”
…But shootings affect more than just the people involved in a dispute, Topalli said.
“It never stays between the initial combatants,” said Topalli, who tracked a dispute from a Georgia dice game that sparked retaliatory shootings that dragged on for five years and killed five people, including a child.
Chicago researchers estimate that one in five youth homicide victims is an innocent bystander.
From the Kansas City Star, “SPECIAL REPORT: Nonfatal shootings in KC: Many bullets and little blame – In six out of 10 cases last year, victims declined to cooperate in catching their attackers, many times out of fear or distrust. Authorities then walked away, routinely shutting down the cases,” (click here).
What prompted me to search today for information on shooting and other victims of serious violence who allegedly don’t want to cooperate with the authorities, was Monday’s LNP story, “Two men injured in city shooting,” (click here).
1. This happened on Friday night and wasn’t reported by LNP until Monday. I don’t know when they received the email from the police, but this is far too long of a delay. I realize there was a serious storm coming but Saturday and Sunday were both relatively calm and this should have been reported on Saturday.
2. How can the police possibly say neither victim “is cooperating with police?” The one was shot in the “lower right abdomen.” I’m sure he went into surgery. This is a major injury! How could he possibly be able to talk rationally in two days? The other was shot “in the upper leg.” I’m guessing that also may have required surgery. How can the police possibly say they were not cooperating after two days? Are the police going to speak with them again when they are further along on their way to healing? (Please see the above article for the story about the young man who was shot in the stomach.)
3. These men are only 19 and twenty years old. Do their parents want the shooter arrested? Do their other family and friends want their shooter arrested? Do the citizens of Lancaster want their shooter arrested? Have police talked to their families, friends and neighbors for information?
4. Who called this in to the police? Where were they shot? In a house or on the street? Did anyone see or hear anything in the 100 block of West Strawberry Street? Did the police go to ask the people in the block if they saw or heard anything?
5. Why doesn’t this article state the police are asking for information from the public and provide phone and tip numbers?
6. What about cameras in the area? Are they being reviewed?
Do you mean to tell me the police are just going to leave another shooter on the street to shoot again? Do you mean to tell me they aren’t going to lift one finger to catch this shooter? This is outrageous and unacceptable and may be part of the reason some victims don’t want to talk to the Lancaster Police - because they know no one will be arrested! And if you’re saying to yourself this is drug or gang related so it won’t affect you – think again!
Please read the excellent article cited above and there will be much more tomorrow.