Decatur has created the village needed to reduce gun violence
On Saturday, May 28, dozens of city residents marched for peace in Decatur and called for an end to gun violence. The march showed the strong commitment of residents and organizations to make Decatur a safer place and to put an end to the killings. The stop the violence youth peach march was organized by Shemilah Outreach Center and Decatur citizen of the year, Shemuel Sanders.
I want to thank our citizens, community organizations, churches, and Decatur Police officers for their heroic efforts to help reduce the surging gun violence and other crimes Decatur experienced in 2020, 2021, and the first few months of 2022. Thanks to everyone’s efforts, there are many reasons to predict that the city will experience a decrease in violent crime including shootings. By coming together, a grassroots effort has formed the village necessary to keep our city safe. As community violence intervention programs, peace summits, youth after-school programs, employment opportunities, and initiatives by the Decatur Police Department continue and expand, violence will decrease.
Overall crime in Decatur for the first four months of the year is lower compared to the same period last year (although April 2022 saw a greater number of shootings and total number of offenses compared to April 2021). The total number of offenses in January – April 2022 (n = 1,418) is 13% less than January – February 2021 (n = 1,631) (data from the National Incident Based Reporting System, NIBRS, and includes crimes against persons, property, and society). There has also been a reduction in the number of shootings the last seven months. The number of shootings in October 2021 – April 2022 (n = 66) is 38% less than in October 2020 – April 2021 (n = 107), and is similar to the number of shootings from October 2019 – April 2020 (n = 62).