ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan and Albany Police Chief Eric Hawkins outlined the next steps to address an outbreak of gun violence that’s resulted in three deaths since Friday.
Monday night, Destiny Greene, 15, was shot on Wilbur Street and later died in the hospital. She’s the third person to be killed by gun violence in the past five days.
“Guns are coming into our community from somewhere. We need all of law enforcement to come together to determine how these guns are getting here, how they’re getting distributed and how we can stop the supply of guns,” Sheehan said.
In all, 10 people have been shot in five different incidents since Friday. Police said they’re unrelated.
Jhajuan Sabb was arrested in connection to the shooting on First Street and Quail Street that killed 35-year-old Sharf Addalim, who was one of six people shot in that incident.
Natural Wise Joseph, 33, of Colonie, was arrested Tuesday afternoon for the Central Avenue shooting death of 39-year-old Lashon Turner, of Albany.
“Police are here, law enforcement is here. If you have a gun and you use it in our city, we will find you, and we will arrest you, and we will ask the district attorney to put you in jail for a very long time,” the mayor said.
In relation to the outbreak of violence, Albany Police will be increasing their presence throughout the city, with the assistance of the Albany County Sheriff’s Office and New York State Police.
“And will be very proactive in identifying individuals who may be committing violence in our city,” Chief Hawkins said.
Hawkins calls the increased patrols a balancing act of protecting and respecting the community. Mayor Sheehan hopes more community policing can also help in getting the community to assist in addressing the issue.
“We have had great conversations with residents of the community who want to engage with our officers, not just have that car sitting in front of First & Quail, but having officers get out of the vehicle, talk to residents,” she says.
With these efforts, city officials are stressing they can’t tackle the issue alone.
“We need the help of the members of this community, we need the members of this community to let us know where these guns are, we need members of the community to let us know if they have information about suspects who are involved in these heinous crimes that we’re seeing in our community,” Hawkins said.
Meanwhile, some people who live in the area of the latest shooting are hoping these initiatives can help, but think change won’t happen overnight.
“I know a lot of police officers. The ones that I know are trying to do the best job that they possibly can, but this system itself doesn’t work. It needs to be fixed,” said Albany resident Tom McPheeters.
Police are continuing to investigate the shooting that took Greene’s life. Greene is the second teenager who has been shot and killed in the city in the month of May.