LOS ANGELES - Thirty-four people were shot in Los Angeles in the last week, and 23 of the shootings were concentrated within a "remarkably small area" of the Los Angeles Police Department's 77th Street and Southeast divisions, Chief Michel Moore said Tuesday.
Moore told the Los Angeles Police Commission that last week was a "troubling week," noting that many of the shootings were concentrated in "a remarkably small area of town when you look at that frequency or that concentration."
The shootings were primarily related to typical street violence, including disputes within gangs and between rival gangs, Moore said.
The 77th Division includes Athens Park, Chesterfield Square, Gramercy Park, Hyde Park, South Park-51st and Menlo, Vermont Knolls, Vermont Park, View Heights, Morningside Park and West Park Terrace.
The Southeast Division includes Athens Park, Avalon Gardens, Hacienda Village, Harbor Gateway, Imperial Courts, Gardena Boulevard, Jordan Downs, Nickerson Gardens, Parkside Manor and Watts.
Additional LAPD patrols and engagement teams with the Mayor's Office of Gang Reduction and Youth Development Program were deployed to the area, according to Moore, who added that violence levels decreased on Saturday and Sunday and no further shootings were reported in the Southeast area.
"The problem that we have throughout Los Angeles is too many guns in too many hands," Moore said, reiterating a belief he frequently shares with the commission. The added enforcement in the 77th Street Division resulted in 16 gun arrests involving 20 firearms, including "a number of assault rifles," Moore said.
Moore said that overall in April, the city has seen an increase in shooting violence and homicides, which "somewhat bucks the trend that we saw in the first three months of 2022," when shootings decreased compared to the previous year.
So far in April, 70 people have been shot in Los Angeles, up from 55 during the same period last year. There have been 107 homicides so far in 2022, while at this point in 2021 there were 109. While the number has decreased slightly in 2022, Moore said it represents a 37% increase over a two-year period.
Violent crime has increased 7.1% year-to-date, with 575 additional violent crimes reported, primarily aggravated assaults, street robberies, and commercial robberies, Moore said. Over a two-year period, violent crime has risen 15.2%.
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