Public makes plea for safety from gangs in SE Fresno

October 31, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
People who live in one southeast neighborhood are calling for an end to violence on a night where children walk door to door, trick-or-treating.

Dozens gathered in a Southeast Fresno neighborhood after a spike in gang shootings throughout the city. Police say five shootings sent five people to the hospital over weekend.

Crowds showed their support as a woman who was too afraid to appear on camera described how this weekend's gang gunfire impacted her family.

"My Parents home was struck four times, two of which hit the wall of my parents' bedroom."

Her parents own a home near this southeast neighborhood, and since bullets shot through their walls, they've worried about further retaliation.

"My mom hasn't been able to sleep since, what can she do? My father doesn't know what to do, how can he protect his family?"

Pastors joined others in the community calling the violence to stop. They're planning to keep walking the streets in the hopes of reaching out to gang members.

Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer says there's a five percent increase in gang related shootings from last year. On Wednesday, he reached out to some of the most prolific offenders.

Chief Dyer said, "I had the opportunity today to meet with 23 gang members, most violent and active influential gang members and have a conversation about the choices that they make."

Police are tracking some of them down in an effort to curb the attacks.

Chief Dyer explained, "Following them, waiting for them to do things that are against the law and make an arrest and hopefully prevent any type of retaliation that are occurring."


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