“You hear gunfire going on all night long. There are just gunshots going off all around the area,” said Cypress Hills resident Anita Kennedy.
That’s how some residents of Cypress Hills describe what it’s been like lately in this part of Eastern Brooklyn. From Sunday night into Tuesday morning, police said, nine people were shot.
What You Need To Know
- Between Sunday night and Tuesday morning nine people were shot in Eastern Brooklyn
- Three teenagers were shot while playing basketball in George Walker Jr. Park, two of them died
- Police believe the shootings are gang-related
“You can’t even go and sit quietly without worrying you’re going to get hit with gunfire,” said Kennedy.
One of the latest shootings happened in George Walker Jr. Park around 10:30 Monday night. Police said a 22-year-old man was shot in the shoulder He was expected to be okay.
The shooting happened as a vigil was taking place for the victims of a shooting that happened in the same park Sunday night, when a man opened fire while hanging out of the sunroof of a Honda CRV. The gunman hit three teenagers, two of whom died.
Antonio Villa, 18, was hit in the head and later died from his injuries.
Kleimer Mendez, 16, was also shot in the head. He died at the scene Sunday night.
The teens were playing basketball when the shooting happened. Police said they were innocent bystanders. Investigators believe the shootings are gang-related.
“We have to identify who’s causing the violence, but we’re going to need the public’s help. Between East New York, Brownsville, parts of Flatbush, and areas of the Bronx, lots of shooting incidents that are occurring,” said NYPD Chief of Detectives Rodney Harrison. “Lot of youth on youth violence, lots of gang violence. These kids are feeling very comfortable to carry the guns.”
The surge in gun violence has Issac Mickens pushing an idea he’s been trying to get the city to consider for years; community checkpoints staffed with civilians in high crime areas.
“Sure, we put a lot of police on the street. That’s all right,” said Mickens. “But they’re not stationary. You got to put something in place that’s going to be stationary 24 hours a day to stop these heinous crimes.”
Meanwhile, Kennedy is doing what she can to stay safe.
“I’m trying to remain vigilant, I’ve done that always,” she said. “Trying to stay indoors a little bit more, but I’m trying not to let it scare me either.”