Officials, activists work to end gun violence after deadly weekend in Detroit

Detroit police had another active weekend – responding to four separate shootings in the city, three of which were fatal.

Friday night, a security camera captured gunshot after gunshot on the 4700 block of Nevada Street near John R. A man in his 20s was killed, and two others were wounded and taken to an area hospital.

Less than 24 hours after the Nevada Street shooting, a 35-year-old Detroit man was fatally gunned down in his car on the exit ramp from north Southfield to I-96. The shooting took place Saturday, after 6 p.m.

"I don’t think the police can control it. I don’t think that because if they could, it wouldn’t still be going on. It’s still going on," said Michael Carter, a Detroiter who lost his 16-year-old nephew to gun violence several years ago. 

"It’s just terrible. It reminds me of when he got killed. And they're still killing people. It don’t make no sense to me when we can talk this out," he said. "We are grown people – talk this out. Don’t kill nobody."

Detroit saw a third fatal shooting Saturday night, around 10:15 p.m., at West Warren and Southfield – where a man in his 20s was killed. The circumstances in this shooting are also unknown at this time.

And by early Sunday morning, two teens from West Bloomfield and Southfield were both shot in the arms while driving in a car on the Lodge near McNichols, according to police. The driver was 18 years old while the passenger was 19.

Michigan State Police received a call around 1:30 a.m. for a single-car crash on the Lodge northbound near McNichols. The caller told MSP they had been shot at and were hiding, police said. A second crash happened after a car crashed into the abandoned victim's vehicle. The driver sustained minor injuries from the crash.

Investigators did find bullet holes in the victims' vehicle. The teens were taken to a local hospital and were last listed in temporary serious condition. 

"I think people are outside. They are drinking, they're engaging in things that people do, and people are just a little more uninhibited if you will," said U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan Dawn Ison.

Ison believes that’s what sparks much of the surge in violence seen in the summer months.

That is why her office will be charging certain gun crimes federally using a "Hot Spot" strategy – focusing in on the most violent parts of the city, along with all of the parks in the city limits.

"We take felons in possession, Glock switches, carjackings, robberies of businesses, and also we also take anybody who has a meaningful connection to those in the 8th and 9th precincts who commit one of those crimes there," she said. "Generally, our sentences carry more time when it comes to those kinds of violent offenses and or gun charges."

Ison spent Monday with Detroit Police, getting the word out about Peacenic. Peacenic is a community event where those in need can get anti violence resources, taking place on June 15.

"There will be a ton of job opportunities there. You can get your licenses in order, you can get an expungement if that’s preventing you from getting a job," Ison said.

While law enforcement agencies do their part for safer streets, community groups are doing theirs. But longtime activists like Pastor Mo say they still need to reach those pulling the trigger to save lives.

"I need to see my young people who are here dying at that table with us. Because they’re the ones dying," Mo said. "As much as they want, they want respect, their want their territory, they want retaliation, they want to shoot guns but they got to want to live. Same way they want respect and want to shoot and want to fight, they got to want to live just as bad."

Anyone with information on the shootings is asked to call 1-855-MICHTIP or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-SPEAKUP.


Violent weekend in Detroit

The circumstances of all shootings are currently unknown.