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Homicides in the Cleveland community rising

James W. Wade III | 6/25/2014, 2:35 p.m.
Reed along with Community Activist Khalid Samad addressed many of the street problems come from young men who are now ...
Community Activist Khalid Samad joined Cleveland City Councilmen Zack Reed and Jeff Johnson on the corner of 123rd and Lenacrave with residents of the neighborhood talking about the violence after the two males were shot in the car Sunday on Lenacrave. Photo by James W. Wade III

Cleveland’s homicide rate has rose to 51 after the three murders this weekend on East 147th and Glendale and two near 123rd and Lenacrave. This coming after Mayor Frank G. Jackson announced a new gun initiative to help fight violent crimes.

The Cleveland division of Police Homicide unit is currently investigating the death of two males. The males were discovered at 12114 Lenacrave at approximately 5 p.m. Fourth District officers received a broadcast assignment for a male shot inside a vehicle in front of 12114 Lenacrave. Upon arrival, officers located a vehicle containing two males inside with apparent gunshot wounds. EMS responded and found both males deceased.

Deandre Moore, a 25 year old Black male, was discovered in driver’s seat. The other victim is 18 year old Antonio Mapson, who just graduated from John Adams High School. Damonte Pruiti, another Black male, age 20, was carried to MetroHealth Center on Sunday by Cleveland EMS from East 147th and Glendale where he was pronounced dead.

On Monday, Councilmen Jeff Johnson and Zack Reed along with residents held a press conference on the corner of 123rd and Lenacrave to address the lack of concern for the neighborhoods and its safety.

Reed along with Community Activist Khalid Samad addressed many of the street problems come from young men who are now lost.

“I have seen all these young men grew up. I knew both the young men who died and I will probably know the people who killed them,” said Samad.

Residents in the area came forward to ask what is being done to help make their neighborhood safe.

“We need to have some organized street clubs again in this area. We used to feel connected when we had them in place,” said resident Pam Thomas.

The residents in the Lenacrave area think more attention should be focused on the community, not just downtown. “We need people from the private sector to help and even The Greater Cleveland Partnership to step in and help with this problem,” said Reed.

“This is not enough. We have so many murders and unsolved murders in my ward alone and I feel the police has to step up and fill positions open so we can get results,” said Reed. For months, Reed has talked about crime being a priority to the residents in Ward 2.

On a map, the dynamic duo showed the chart where it’s a Cleveland problem and something has to be done. Red dots filled the location where the 51 homicides have taken place all over the city. “I know the feeling not long ago on my side of town when they had a shooting in streets during a block party,” said Johnson.

The mayor’s office responded to the councilmen’s press conference about the latest homicides by email. They said, “We have a number of initiatives underway to address violent crimes, particularly with law enforcement partnerships like VGRIP. As a result, crime has been trending downward over the last several years in the city.”