A night of horrific shootings in Cincinnati this weekend left a tragic tally of victims scattered around the city.
At least 18 people were seriously injured and four were killed in the early Saturday morning burst of gun violence that stretched into dawn, according to the Associated Press.
Weekend violence hits Cincinnati
The shootings followed one after another in the span of several hours, but they were apparently unrelated, according to authorities.
An incident in Walnut Hills left three people injured, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer. Four were shot in another episode in the Avondale neighborhood, including Antonio Blair, 21, who died of his wounds.
Another 10 people were shot in the Over-the-Rhine neighborhood, leaving at least two dead, Robert Rogers, 34, and Jaquiez Grant, 30. A fourth shooting after dawn in the West End claimed a fourth victim, 39-year-old Myron Green, according to local NBC affiliate WLWT.
“These all seem to be separate, independent incidents, but horrific and tragic that we have this much violence and potential for that much loss of life in our city,” Assistant Police Chief Paul Neudigate said, according to Fox News.
“One extremely violent night in the city of Cincinnati,” Neudigate told reporters. “Looking at possibly 17 victims, up to four that could be fatal at this time. Why? That’s going to be the question.”
Violence amid defunding demands
Shootings and murders are up in major cities all across the country, as America faces a summer of protests and unrest that have often turned violent. Cincinnati is no exception, with shootings up 55% compared to last year, according to the Enquirer.
Democrats have routinely insisted that demonstrations are “mostly peaceful,” while focusing their rhetoric on attacking Donald Trump’s response to the coronavirus as well as his attempts to restore “law and order” to cities riven by gun violence and civil strife.
Even as Cincinnati faces this chaos, the city has seen calls to slash the city’s police budget in the midst of nationwide efforts to “defund the police.” The city rejected such proposals in June, the Enquirer reported, but there’s another push to restructure the city’s police department coming this November.
Meanwhile, local officials are pleading with residents to stop the violence, including Police Chief Eliot Isaac, who said: “I am calling on all citizens of this great city to say enough is enough! We must not sit by silently and say we can’t do anything to end gun violence.”
Sadly, there have reportedly been no arrests made yet in connection to the weekend bloodshed.