Oakland Police are investigating 7 new murders over the previous week as spikes of avenue violence – CBS San Francisco
OAKLAND (CBS SF) – Oakland Police Chief LeRonne L. Armstrong publicly advocated an increase in resources on Monday as the department investigates seven new murders over the past week, including three on Saturday alone.
Monday evening Oakland City Council looked at ways to redistribute some of the roughly $ 190 million the city is receiving under the American Rescue Plan Act.
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Despite the rise in crime, some community members say the money would be better spent elsewhere, but the council voted to fund police programs that were cut during the pandemic, including Operation Armistice, a community-based approach to combating gun violence in collaboration with the police .
Chief Armstrong released a statement Monday night saying he was grateful for the council’s support and that this was a first step to tackle violence in the city.
Earlier, the boss spoke about the rampant murder during a press conference and urged residents to say something if they see anything as the city faces a sustained surge in homicides and robberies.
“I really appeal today to the Oakland community and to all who are grappling with the grave nature of the rise in violence in Oakland,” said Armstrong. “It’s been seven extremely violent days.”
The chief said the city had registered 41 homicides so far in 2021.
“At that time last year we had 13 homicides. That is an increase of 215%. That’s totally unacceptable, ”said Armstrong. “It is tragic for our community to have to deal with this level of trauma and pain.”
The boss then expressed his condolences to all the families of the victims who had been killed in gun violence that year, including three people who died on Saturday alone.
In the three unrelated incidents, two men and a teenager were fatally shot.
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“We have lost 13 people to murder since March 11,” said Armstrong. “President Biden called it an epidemic. One to which this city has to react. “
Armstrong went on with the dismal stats, noting that there had been 159 shootings so far in 2021, compared to just 79 in the same period last year, an increase of over 100%. According to the boss, carjackings have also increased “to unprecedented levels,” with 149 incidents compared to 57 at the time last year – an increase of 161%.
Oakland Police also found there were 69 cases of gunfire and 53 robberies in a warning to Oakland residents over the past week.
“We need to come together as a city to end the violence in our community. If you see something, let me know !! “read the message.
Oakland authorities raised the alarm on Friday over the rise in street violence, saying the department was investigating three new murders and 32 robberies within 24 hours, with some incidents involving suspects as early as 11 years of age.
Police said the three murders occurred within 24 hours and investigators are following up on the clues.
On Monday, Armstrong also found that his department was increasingly short of funds due to budget cuts caused by the pandemic.
“Today our councilors will vote on the Care Act resources and hopefully allocate resources to the department,” said Armstrong. “This is a big job in the City of Oakland to fight this violence, but it won’t work without resources. This city must value the lives of our parishioners. “
Anyone with additional information on the murders is encouraged to call the Oakland Police Department Homicide at (510) 238-3821 or the tipline at (510) 238-7950.
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Andrea Nakano contributed to this report.