ST. LOUIS – The crime in St. Louis is starting to heat up just as much as the weather. This past weekend, five people were killed in 15 shootings that left 18 others injured.
When you look at the numbers, it may be a little frightening: 56 homicides in the city in about four months. Twenty percent of the known suspects and victims in those homicides are teenagers. It’s about one shooting death every two and a half days.
“We have to have hope and faith that we can do something,” said Bridget Andrews with the Saint Margaret of Scotland Gun Sense Committee.
Andrews said she wants her neighborhood to help make a difference in the city’s gun violence issue. On Thursday, the committee in the Shaw neighborhood hosted a call to action to educate residents on what they can do to help prevent gun violence.
“We love the city,” she said. “We love being here; we are vested in it, so we want to make it a safe community for everybody.”
Andrews and a number of speakers spoke in front of a crowd at the church to let people know how to work with legislators or participate in gun violence advocacy events and how to remember the people who lost their lives to gun violence.
Emily Schiltz, one of the speakers at the event, is the mother of two children who were at the Collegiate School of Medicine and Bioscience when the shooting at Central Visual Performing Arts High School happened. Schiltz explained what she went through that October day as “a feeling, a blind terror, a sickening hole began opening up inside of me.”
While the number of 56 homicides may seem like a big number, the city is actually on track for one of its lowest totals of shooting homicides in the last five years.