Community activists plead with the public to stop the violence

Local News

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Four people shot in a public park Wednesday evening then, three men shot to death in a home on Ashley Street early Thursday morning.

Pastor James Giles of Back to Basics Outreach Ministries says, “You’re hitting innocent people. Stop that. We’re pleading with you to stop that.”

Pastor Giles stood in front of a known drug house on Ashley near Person Street where police found three men shot to death inside just before sunrise Thursday.

“Unfortunately brothers because you’re the ones clapping on everybody, brothers do not know how to resolve conflict or issue. They think that the best way for me to do that is to take a person’s life and that’s sick and sickening,” added Pastor Giles.

These community activists are begging for more community participation because most of this year’s 44 murders are not solved.

Deputy Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia said, “We are consistently asking for assistance. We consistently ask people to come forward, even if it’s anonymous through tip lines but we need your assistance with this investigation.”

Wednesday night, before sunset, some men were playing a game of dice in the park next to JFK Recreation Center on Hickory Street when one or two people opened fire wounding four people including a 14-year-old and an eight-year-old boy.

Murray Holman, president, Stop the Violence Coalition tells us, “It’s a life-threatening injury because that kid has been traumatized by that bullet hitting his body and everywhere he goes now, he’s gonna be thinking about he doesn’t want to go to a basketball court or a park because it’s in his mind.”

Late Thursday afternoon Mayor Byron Brown released a statement saying he plans to increase police patrols throughout the city to keep all residents safe from this senseless violence. He goes on to say, “my thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families, but our actions remain dedicated to reducing the gun violence that has plagued cities.”

George Richert is an award-winning reporter who first joined the News 4 team in 1998, later returning in 2018. See more of his work here.

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