CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - Seconds after taking the stage on Thursday night Mayor Frank Jackson said, “Let me just be clear: my family is my family. Alright, and I do not apologize to anybody about my family.”
After that, Jackson immediately changed the topic.
As we’ve reported, his grandson -- Frank Q. Jackson -- was labeled a prime suspect by Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Michael O’Malley in a brazen West Side murder that occurred in broad daylight in late August.
Mayor Jackson’s teenage great-grandson, who may be connected to gang activity, is accused of shooting at an undercover officer while driving a car without a license.
Not to mention, there have been at least 101 violent deaths this year, including this past weekend when a 6-year-old girl was killed in a hail of gunfire as she slept in her South Collinwood home.
Mayor Jackson did praise the technology being used to fight crime, saying the city is investing millions of dollars in innovation and technology. "One example is a real-time crime center. It’s a critical component of our violence reduction strategy. Real-time crime center provides timely intelligence and information and information to investigators and other responders.”
The main theme of Mayor Jackson’s speech was how the city of Cleveland needs to focus on producing equity and eliminating the disparity. He gave the example of how Cleveland ranks 14th in the nation when it comes to disparities in income between white and black households.
“Cleveland is a successful city, but it’s not a great city. A great city is one where everyone, everyone shares and prosperity and quality of life.”
He went on to say, “If we want to see that kind of growth ladies and gentlemen, we have to put the work in.”
The mayor also applauded the city schools in closing the achievement gap.
The media was not allowed to ask questions. 19 News has an interview scheduled with Mayor Jackson on Friday. We will continue to ask the tough questions.