CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) -“I don’t know how the mayor sleeps at night knowing that this city is in chaos,” said Nohemi Ayala.
Harsh words from a woman who lost a family member to a violent crime, where there's still no arrest. Now, some saying there aren't enough officers to cover the busiest district in Cleveland. She and many others wants to know why.
“It’s picking up the pieces, it’s not an easy thing to do. It’s a big loss, and it’s a long road to recovery,” Ayala told Cleveland 19′s Lacey Crisp.
Ayala takes comfort in caring for the still flourishing flowers her mother and grandmother loved so much. A robber broke into their home, beating her grandmother to death, and severely injuring her mother.
“It seems like the people who are doing the vandalism, breaking in, killing in our case, have been empowered by knowing there is no one here to protect us,” Ayala said.
Monday marks one month since the violent attack, Eucebia died from her injuries, and Marina is still recovering. The family is frustrated there hasn’t been an arrest. They are even angrier to hear there could be fewer police patrolling this neighborhood.
The fourth district has been painfully understaffed for several months. The department has offered overtime for officers from other districts, they’ve had the specialty units cover some shifts. Now, they are looking at shuffling schedules to cut down on overtime, which could mean fewer officers on streets.
We reached out to Cleveland Police, and they sent a statement saying, "We are exploring alternative deployment plans that are based on calls for service, location, types of service etc.” said Sergeant Jennifer Ciaccia.
That is not good enough for Ayala.
“We deserve better. We deserve living in peace. We deserve to be able to raise our kids so they can bike on our streets and not feel that terror,” Ayala said.
The city is working on hiring an additional 250 officers by 2019.