SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - Gunfire has been heard in Shreveport every day, multiple times a day since this past Sunday, Dec. 6.
Tensions ran high and tears fell at Shreveport’s city council meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 8, as people voiced their concerns on what they want to see from the city leaders.
“On Sunday, I watched our city grieve another soul taken too soon,” a woman said during public comment. “Every day since then, I witnessed many local politicians and public officials saying tactless things like, ‘stop the violence’ and ‘what can we do to change this?’”
Some council members turned to police chief Ben Raymond for answers, which caused tensions to rise in the chambers.
“Our officers are working hard, they’re doing a good job,” Raymond said.
Raymond said the department has called on the “Caddo Parish Sheriff’s Office, the FBI, U.S. Attorney’s office” to help them reduce and solve crime in the city.
“The key to it is to get the illegal weapons off the streets and out of the hands of the people who don’t need them, coupled with the citizens not allowing those weapons to get in those hands to begin with.”
He said he also needs people in the community to speak up when they know information about a crime.
Joffre Shivers, a citizen of Shreveport, said he thinks the crime is spreading in the city rather than getting better.
“Crime is supposed to restricted to inner-city communities, and when you think about Pines Road, that lets you know how out of control it really is,” he said.
Shreveport has seen 73 homicides in 2020, according to chief Ben Raymond.