Block by block in Hartford on Monday, faith members and police joined together for an anti-violence walk.
They prayed for those lost to gun violence in the city and reached out to community members.
“I think the major message is unity. If we unify and become that one voice and we spread the message of love and hope we can change the dynamics of what is happening, especially the violence, gun violence in this area,” said William Cordero from the New Life Worship Center.
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According to the most recent Hartford crime statistics, murders are about at the same number compared to this time last year.
But burglaries are up 36% and robberies are up about 40%. Auto thefts are down, as are non-fatal shootings.
“Violent crime, I don’t know if it will ever be down enough. It is down compared to last year. But I do think it’s up compared to years before. We’re going to keep doing the work, engaging with the community, getting out here and talking to people,” said Hartford Police Chief Jason Thody.
Police are hoping these walks help build trust with neighbors.
Some of them think this effort could make a difference.
“We all need to have faith and work with each other and make sure every kid, adult is safe here because there is a lot of violence in this area,” said Charlyene Holmes of Hartford.
This walk and another one next Monday are also raising awareness about an event called Faith & Blue Weekend.
It takes place Oct. 9 from 2 to 6 p.m. at 127 Mather St. in Hartford.