City of Saginaw experiencing uptick in violence, homicides from 2019
SAGINAW, Mich. (WJRT) -”It is an uptick for the city here. An increase in homicides, but is it happening all over the nation. All over the state of nation. Larger cities are seeing an uptick in gun violence, just violent crime in general,” said Saginaw Police Det./Sgt. Oscar Lopez.
Friday night--police were called to the one thousand block of Lindsey Drive. That’s where they found a 35 year old Saginaw man suffering from multiple gun shot wounds. He was rushed to the hospital where he later died.
His death marks the 22nd homicide in Saginaw this year.. The most the city has seen since 2013-- when Saginaw reported 29 homicides. in 2019-- there were just 9.
FBI crime statistics: Homicides in Saginaw since 2013.
2020-22 ----6 weeks left in year.
Oscar Lopez is a Detective/SGT with the Saginaw Police. He says its hard to pinpoint exactly what driving the increase in violence in the city.
“None of our homicides are related to any gang rivalries or anything like that. We can’t pinpoint anything like that right now. None of them are related. I will tell you this, that we have a 75 percent closure rate on the the 22 that we have so far. so we have a lot of arrests in these and we have identified suspects in some of the other ones,” Lopez said.
And the uptick in violence and the investigation into the crimes, is taking place in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic.
“We have to do policing different ways now. Being apart from each other, trying to keep your distance, wearing your mask, it’s strenuous . Especially with investigators, because that’s what we do. We interview people, we are up close and personal. This pandemic is putting a strain on us. We have to do things outside the box now,” he said.
It’s another reason why Lopez says the community’s help is so important in solving these crimes.
“These ones that are unsolved, we urge the community, if you know something, please come forward. Anything helps. Any little tip can turn into something,” Lopez said.
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