An estimated 72 people were wounded in 53 shootings citywide from June 15 through Sunday night, an NYPD spokesperson said Monday morning. The department saw 14 shooting victims in 12 shootings for the same time period last year, data shows.
“We cannot expect the police to go out there and fix laws that are broken… We need bad people held accountable, and right now we have a lack of accountability.”
Those numbers include a 24-hour period on Saturday that recorded about two dozen shootings in that time frame, the spokesperson confirmed.
NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea said Monday morning that skyrocketing shooting numbers are “just the latest symptom” of a much bigger problem.
“I hope I’m not the only one – it takes a long time to turn a ship – that sees the iceberg directly in front of us,” Shea told NY1 on Monday morning. “We’ve been trending this way for a while.”
Shea was featured on the show to discuss a recent chokehold incident that occurred in Queens over the weekend, which resulted in an officer being suspended without pay while the department further investigates the use of force.
But about halfway through the interview, Shea changed gears, noting that, in addition to the officer’s use of the chokehold, the “quality of life nexus” concerns him. He outlined the latest shooting numbers and stressed: “If people aren’t talking about it, they are going to be soon.
“We had a hundred shootings in May – first time we hit that number in probably five years. We were trending up before COVID hit on shooting,” he said. “The shame of this is I’ve been warning people since November or December that this is coming. A month or two ago, I told you that there is a storm on the horizon.”
Shea emphasized the need to have “hard conversations” about quality-of-life issues and said, “nearly every shooting” that occurred over the weekend involved marijuana, alcohol and dice games.
“We cannot step away from quality of life policing. And we also need to support our police officers that are out there doing a very difficult job,” he said. “We cannot expect the police to go out there and fix laws that are broken. We cannot stop our way out of this problem. We need bad people held accountable and right now we have a lack of accountability.”
Just Sunday, the NYPD’s Chief of Crime Control Strategies, who oversees crime statistics and trends in the city, told the New York Post the gun arrests that the police department has made are stalled because courts have been closed as a result of the pandemic.
“We have over 1,000 people that have been indicted on a gun-possession charge, where the cases are open, and they are walking around the streets of New York today,” Michael LiPetri told the Post.
Roughly 800 more people were charged with criminal possession of a weapon but have not yet been formally indicted.
“It’s gonna be a massive backlog,” LiPetri continued. “We’re concerned.”
As for the shooting numbers for the whole year, an estimated 17 percent were cases in which the shooter or the victim was a parolee, LaPetri told the Post.
“We’ve never seen a higher percentage of parolee-involved incidents with shootings,” he said, “since we’ve been tracking it in ’05.”