Officials appeal for peace as Philadelphia records 500th homicide of 2021

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Philadelphia on Wednesday saw its 500th murder of 2021 after a 55-year-old woman was shot and killed in what is being described as the city’s worst year since 1990.

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A video of the incident shows the woman shouting “Call 911” as she runs towards two pedestrians in South Philadelphia at around 4.30 pm on Wednesday.

When the pedestrians fled, another man with a gun in hand entered the camera frame. He followed her around a jeep and fired five bullets at her. Three of them hit him in the chest. The victim was taken to the hospital but the doctors declared her brought dead on arrival.


The alleged shooter, whom the police believe to be the woman’s husband, was seen walking on the road recklessly after committing the crime. The police have urged him to turn himself in.

The fatal shooting comes days after a 24-year-old woman was shot by her ex-boyfriend in front of her young children. In another incident, a seven-month pregnant woman, who was on her way home from a baby shower, was shot in the abdomen at least 11 times on November 20. The 32-year-old was soon pronounced dead at a medical center, having lost her unborn child as well.

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“Please stop shooting each other,” City Council President Darrell Clark said at a news conference on Wednesday. “Please stop killing our community.”

“The message is going out to all those who find themselves at a level of despair where they feel there is no other way or to find themselves in any mindset that would cause you to shoot a pregnant woman.” Think about it, man. Don’t continue this activity because it’s killing our communities,” he said.

“There’s a better way,” said Mr. Clark. “We’ve put $155 million down the road with community groups, right? We have jobs available. We have wraparound services available.”

Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw called the spike “almost too much to bear” in inflicting an unintentional loss of life.

“These victims are much more than numbers. It’s not about when we reach 200, 300, 500, 600. These people are… and whose lives have been tragically cut short, their lives have left a void in the hearts of their families and their absence has left a profound experience. impact on our community,” she said.

Ms Outlaw reminded the public that there was a permanent reward of $20,000 for information leading to arrest and conviction.

Gun violence has increased in the city amid the Kovid-19 pandemic, which has crippled the US economy.

In October, Philadelphia announced that it would spend $14m (£10.5m) to equip all of its officers with stun guns, train them to use them and require officers to wear them while on duty.

The announcement was made on the anniversary of the fatal police shooting of Walter Wallace Jr. On 26 October 2020, Wallace, a black man, was shot 14 times by two white police officers for possessing a knife.

Meanwhile, Mayor Jim Kenney accused lawmakers of failing to act on the flow of illegal guns into the city.

“It’s heartbreaking, heartbreaking, it’s terrifying to wake up every morning and look at the numbers,” he said.

“There are people who are making money selling these guns, making these guns, and the legislature, not the people behind me, doesn’t care. They don’t care how many people get killed,” Mr. Kenny said.


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