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City leaders working to help combat recent crime

Published: Nov. 20, 2021 at 10:29 PM CST|Updated: Nov. 20, 2021 at 11:09 PM CST
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - The city of Birmingham says there have been more shooting victims this year compared to in 2020, with some recent victims being young children. Officials said murder is also up by 4.5%.

“A lot of it is related to gun crime,” Councilman Hunter Williams said “There is a real unfortunate reality that some of our neighborhoods are plagued by gun violence.”

Gun violence that is now impacting children, like nine-year-old Ja’liyah Baker and six-year-old Carlos Moore, both innocently shot in the last two weeks.

Birmingham Police said nine children under the age of 10 have been shot this year.

“It is especially horrific when it is someone defenseless like a child,” Williams said. “There is no excuse. There is no way to try and understand that type of reckless endangerment.”

Councilman Hunter Williams sits on the city’s public safety board and he said they are working on long and short term solutions to the city’s crime. Their long term goals are investing in Birmingham kids and their future.

“Making sure that our city school children when they graduate BCS, they have options after they graduate,” he said. “Making sure that our enforcement is working. We are investing in technology to make sure that we have a full picture of what is going on.”

The city just invested in the $3M Real Time Crime Center, giving police more eyes on crime to catch criminals faster.

“We want to make sure that we are doing everything possible,” Williams said.

They also plan to crack down on businesses who are ignoring violence and crime on the property.

“If they are going to allow narcotic sales to happen at their establishment, and we aren’t talking about one off events, we are talking about a pattern of criminal activity, then we are going to take you to court or we are going to take away your business license.”

The city voted to revoke the business license of the USA Economy Lodge on Highway 31. Williams said it was directly linked to the crime the owners allowed to take place.

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