BOSTON (WHDH) - As temperatures in Boston rise, city and law enforcement officials are asking children and teenagers to steer clear of violence this summer.
“We have one homicide and we have to notify a parent that they lost their child,” Mayor Martin J. Walsh said. “That’s a terrible position to be in. We want to reduce that number this year.”
Walsh met Friday with officials from the Boston Police Department, the Suffolk District Attorney’s Office and other organizations, to lay out a plan with the goal of making this summer the safest in city history.
“We started out with prayer and we ended with prayer, hoping we have a peaceful summer,” Boston Police Commissioner William B. Evans said of the meeting.
Sixteen people have been killed so far in 2018, six more deaths than a year ago Friday, according to Evans. Despite that statistic, Boston’s top cop said crime and arrests are down since 2014.
“The only thing that we continually have a problem with is young kids shooting young kids,” Evans said.
Officials hope parents and kids will take advantage of youth programs and summer jobs, rather than resorting to guns and other violence.
“If you do, we are going to come down on you hard in our office,” Suffolk District Attorney Daniel Conley said. “We are going to try and hold you accountable, and keep you off of the street this summer. That’s not what you want. That’s not what we want.”
Despite the uptick in homicides, Evans noted that there have been 10 fewer shootings this year compared to last year. Police have also helped take nearly 270 guns off the streets.
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