St. Louis community leaders speak out about violence after 4 children shot

Missouri

ST. LOUIS – A violent Thursday night in St. Louis city ended with four children shot in three separate shootings. The children were shot in an eight-hour time span.

The most recent shootings involved children all under the age of 15. The shootings have raised serious concerns for city leaders and residents, and they are calling for the violence to end. 

“I  hear gun shots every night,” Mayor Tishaura Jones said. 

Jones spoke out about the recent gun violence after four children were shot in eight hours. The mayor said the violence hits close to home.

“This touches home because my son was almost a victim at least twice since we moved back to north St. Louis,” Jones said. “Once he was walking across from my father’s house and someone tried to mug him, and hold him up, and pointed a gun at him.” 

“Also, one time he was outside playing and someone was driving shooting in the air. He could have been hit by a stray bullet.”

Investigators said the first shooting happened just after 4 p.m. Thursday when a fight between two groups of juveniles along the 4000 block Ohio Avenue in south St. Louis ended in gunfire.

A seven-year-old boy was shot in the side and a 15-year-old girl was grazed. Police said their injuries are not life-threatening, but they have not said what the argument was about. No suspects are in custody.
   
Just three hours later, a 13-year-old boy was shot in the hip near South Compton in south St. Louis. There is no word on what led to the shooting.

Residents have resumed their pleas for the violence to end as it wears on in this community.

“Its a shame kids can’t go outside anymore,” Rolanda Simms said. “You can’t be in your own home without being a victim of a crime.”
  
Just after midnight, a 14-year-old was shot along North 22nd Street at Howard Street in north St. Louis. The boy was conscious and breathing when taken to the hospital.

Authorities said all of the children who were injured are expected to survive. Police are encouraging anyone with information about the shootings to contact CrimeStoppers at 877-371-TIPS.

Jones has proposed plans to help youth stay on the right path.

“My $80 million direct relief package, currently in front of the board of alderman, includes millions of dollars for youth programs year-round and programs for our young people,” Jones said.

“Partnering with our schools and the Boys and Girls Club. Activities for our children during the day and extending dates into the evening. We are working hard as we can to get this direct relief package passed so we can start these programs to keep our kids out of danger way.”

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