Delray Police ask for help to curb gun violence

Delray Police ask for help to curb gun violence
Delray Beach Police ask for more community cooperation to curb gun violence

DELRAY BEACH, Fla. - For the second time this week, the Delray Beach community got together to discuss ways to curb gun violence in the city.

After an ex-con hosted a peace march Tuesday, it was police’s turn to open up the conversation.

Part of the conversation: asking for more cooperation from the community.

On July 19, a 10-year-old boy was shot inside of a home, after police say someone fired a gun out of a Chevy Tahoe.

The home the boy was inside of had cameras, but the people inside didn’t want police to see it.

Swat served a warrant on the home.

“Once we got the video equipment out of the home, unfortunately, somebody removed the hard drive from the video equipment,” Interim Police Chief Mary Olson said in an interview.

That crime remains unsolved.

It’s part of the ongoing fued between two factions that police believe started in 2009. Since 2014, there have been more than 50 shootings connected to the fued. Five of them homicides. Two declared stand your ground. Three of them still unsolved.

“We can’t present a case to the State Attorney’s Office unless we have a cooperating witness or a cooperating victim that says I know who did it, it’s this person,” Olson said.

With the launch of the gun violence team, we told you about exclusively Wednesday, Delray Beach police continued its conversation with the community to try to earn more cooperation.

“Why violence and criminal activity is happening in our community because good people won’t say nothing and do nothing,” said Prince Arafat, a local pastor, to the crowd of about 200.

A key in Wednesday’s arrest of 22-year-old Lonnetris Durham, connected the October 8 shooting tied that fued, was help from the community.

“We can’t affect the safety and security of our community without our community’s help,” Olson said.

Thursday night was not just a one-time thing. They want to host meetings just like that at least every other month, potentially more of the situation calls for it.

In a standing ovation worthy performance, City Manager Mark Lauzier delivered a poem he wrote to promote peace. That is up on our Facebook page right now.