• 59°

Editorial: Help police solve this crime

Saturday morning’s double shooting behind the J.C. Price American Legion Post, killing one man and critically injuring his brother, brings attention again to the city’s struggle against crime.

Police have released few details of what happened or why, if they know, but the incident follows a too-familiar pattern of young black men being felled by bullets. The dangerous atmosphere of attack and retaliation that has taken hold in some corners of the city has erupted into gunfire again. A man has died. 

And someone else has become a killer.

Down 12 members, the Police Department needs more manpower and leadership to break this deadly dance. Training and resources are essential, too. But police cannot fight crime alone. They need help from citizens. They need information from people who witness or hear about crimes.

Police are dealing with the results of deep problems in our society — unemployment, poverty, teen pregnancy, poor literacy, drug abuse, broken families and much more. These problems create an atmosphere in which gangs thrive, and gangs drive the cycle of violence and revenge plaguing many American cities.

Police have not said what if any role gangs played in the killing of Devon McGee and shooting of his brother, Antoine, on Saturday, but the incident revived memories of young Treasure Feamster, only 13, getting killed in gang crossfire at the same spot in 2007. Fast forward to 2016: A fist fight that started inside the Legion Post moved outside and became a fire fight.

The national homicide rate in 2011 was 4.44 deaths per 100,000 people, according to the FBI, and blacks were far more likely to be victims. The black homicide rate that year, 17.54 per 100,000, was almost four times the overall rate and six times the white rate of 2.64 per 100,000. Something is terribly wrong when violence skews so heavily toward one segment of our society — a segment just as vital to the community as every other.

Local groups have formed to help stop the violence and bring young people hope. Examples include the Nightcrawlers, who walk as a group through neighborhoods to offer prayer and conversation, and Man Up Mondays, which sends black pastors and businessmen and others into the schools as mentors. Several more programs are doing good work with youth, too.

None of that takes pressure off Salisbury Police to solve the Legion Post shootings and make arrests. The community needs to help. Anyone with information about the shootings is encouraged to call Salisbury Police at 704-638-5333 or Crime Stoppers at 1-866-639-5245. Information can be shared anonymously. Please call if you know something that would help.

Comments

Education

UNCC chancellor talks about strengthening partnerships in Rowan County

Local

City adopts 2021-22 budget, discusses third quarter financial report from current fiscal year

Landis

Landis, Kannapolis discuss extraterritorial boundary change as 1,000-home subdivision planned

News

Bill retires many NC coal-fired plants, boosts renewables

High School

High school baseball: East escapes with eighth-inning homer; South also wins in first round

Elections

Board of Elections moves forward with purchase of new voting equipment, software

Sports

‘New energy’ coming from QB Darnold

News

Museum loses contract over event deemed racially insensitive

News

NC tax revenue soars, $6.5B windfall predicted by mid-2023

News

Police: Grandmother of man who shot at officers found dead

Crime

Blotter: Gold Hill man charged with statutory rape

Crime

Man charged with killing 28-year-old found dead in crashed car

Crime

68-year-old woman identified as Jackson Street murder victim

Crime

Man arrested in Jacksonville for Salisbury murder

Local

Rowan-Salisbury Schools finalizes normal, five-day schedule for fall

Local

Council to vote on budget, consider permit for child care center near downtown

Landis

Landis adopts budget with reduction in residential electric rates, no tax increases

Local

Political Notebook: Budd campaign touts boost in voter support after Trump endorsement

Local

Seventh Dragon Boat Festival scheduled July 24

News

NC rights groups say GOP bills impede voting access

Local

Sgt. Shane Karriker’s funeral procession travels through downtown Salisbury

Crime

Blotter: June 14

Ask Us

Ask Us: When will front entrance to courthouse reopen?

Coronavirus

As COVID-19 cases wane, vaccine-lagging areas still at risk