“It’s a busy year and we’re all dealing with it,” Lt. Aaron Boisvert with Hartford Police said.
It's just halfway through the year and the city of Hartford is already seeing homicide numbers for the totality of 2020 and is on track to double that number.
“You have to find these shooters who are carrying those guns that have shot before and are willing to shoot again,” Commissioner James Rovella from the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection said.
Rovella, also a former Hartford Police Chief, said he’s seen Hartford’s gun violence epidemic and said the current resurgence deserves critical attention.
Last year, there were 25 homicides in the capitol city and so far this year, Hartford police are reporting 20 homicides through June.
“Our homicide investigators made arrests in over 50% of our homicides this year already. Those are great numbers. We don’t want any homicides, we’d rather have no homicides,” Boisvert said.
NBC Connecticut has obtained new numbers from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME) that show a rising murder rate across Connecticut. More information can be found here.
Boisvert said the numbers are worth putting in perspective. He said out of all of Hartford’s 64 fatal and non-fatal shootings this year, there have been 69 victims and more than a third of the shooting incidents have resulted in arrests. When it comes to Hartford’s 20 homicides, more than half of the cases have also resulted in arrests.
“We’ve seen this before. And what was this response before? More cops, more cops, more cops. Cops on dots, cops on corners. More arrests, more arrests, more arrests and that doesn’t really cut it anymore in our society. There’s no relationship between number of arrests and lowering violent crime,” Rovella said.
While arrests are key in preventing retaliation, Rovella said newly dedicated federal funding to help address gun violence, stolen cars and drugs will help achieve a multi-prong community approach to reduce gun violence.
“Our kids in cities connect better with youth counselors. They connect better with the education system, they don’t connect right away with law enforcement,” Rovella said.