It comes as small surprise that the police suspect that the shooting of five people on Roosevelt Avenue in Elmhurst was gang-related. It is a miracle no one was killed. Three of the people were grazed. A 45-year-old man was shot in the back and a 21-year-old woman in the torso.
Police do not think the victims know one another. It remains unclear if the shooter(s) intended to hit these victims or whether they were innocent bystanders. The attack has left the community outraged and frightened. Gang culture is threatening to take the city back to the days before Mayor Rudolph Giuliani. There are too many gang members with too many guns and too many victims.
Elected officials are talking about an "epidemic of violence" in Jackson Heights and Elmhurst. They have called on the NYPD to increase its area presence and work closely with community leaders to get the guns and criminals who carry them off the street.
The Roosevelt Boulevard shootings and killing of two teenagers in the Rockaways should become a turning point. Elected officials and religious and community leaders must stand with the police to get guns off the street and end gang violence.
©2008 Community News Group
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