CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - Cleveland’s Ward 7 councilman says the violence, in particular gun violence, appears to be increasing after two children on the East side of the city were shot on Tuesday; a 12-year-old shot in the lower leg and a 7-year-old who was struck by a stray bullet in the head.
“So, I just want to make it crystal clear to everyone out there that when you are destructive to our community, it is not something that we will tolerate,” Councilman Basheer Jones said.
Councilman Jones represents Cleveland’s Ward 7 and was back on East 59th and Olive Court. It was the scene of where three people were shot in a drive-by on Tuesday, including a 12-year-old girl who was out playing.
A neighbor who ran out to help describes what happened, but she did not want to be identified.
“I seen the car come past with a guy with his arm straight up, with a gun in his hand as he rode that way. Then I heard the scream. Someone went in the house and got a T-shirt. I wrapped it around her leg and tied it real tight, myself and another person,” the unidentified woman said.
As the young girl was comforted by neighbors, 911 was also called for two adults; one shot in the chest, another in the leg.
“I think that some people need to be removed from down here, where they all hang out for one. I’ve seen that playground get shot up,” the unidentified neighbor told 19 News.
Councilman Jones wanted to talk to neighbors about those very issues and suggested that neighbors could help police their own neighborhood at a time when law enforcement is stretched thin.
“If you know who people are who committed these crimes in which our elders are unsafe and our children are unsafe, you make sure that you have dialogue. Dialogue with the authorities,” Jones said.
The councilman also promised anonymity to anyone who comes forward with information, saying he would make sure it gets to the proper authorities.
“This will always be a ‘hood’ if neighbors don’t work together. We have to put the neighbor back in neighborhood,” Councilman Jones said.
However, some neighbors tell 19 News that the solution is for law enforcement to step up monitoring areas where crime continues to rise.