Mayor Dave Bing is pleading with Detroiters to “stop the madness” after another violent weekend in the city.
Bing’s plea comes after a shooting on the city’s east side left a six-year-old boy critically injured.
Detroit Police have arrested a pair of 15-year-olds in the case. Chief Ralph Godbee says the two were on a carjacking spree when the shooting happened.
Even crime-hardened Detroiters have been taken aback by the indiscriminate nature of recent violence. Two Detroit children have died violently in the past month, both in shootings that appeared to stem from petty disputes. The city is also reeling from news that a 14-year-old murdered his mother as she slept.
Godbee says even inmates he spoke with at a Detroit prison this weekend couldn't believe the current wave of violence.
“To a person, those men in the Ryan Road correctional facility, they said ‘Chief, this is unacceptable,'" Godbee said. "'This is a code that goes beyond even what we as criminals would do and what we’re incarcerated for. And when kids and the elderly start getting killed, something has to stop.'”
Many Detroiters are voicing increasing frustration with police response to the violence--or what many see as the lack of one.
Godbee says he’s confident the department has the “resolve and the acumen” to decrease the violence. But he and Bing insist there's little they can do if community members don't cooperate with police.
Bing seemed visibly appalled, and at times at a loss for words when describing the rash of violence.
"When you've got parents afraid of their kids, you know you have not done a good job as a parent," Bing said. "You need to start disciplining those young people when they come out of the womb. Mothers and fathers ... you can't start disciplining a kid at the age of 12 or 14, it's too late." “I am hopeful that all of you who are watching and hearing this will not sit idly by and let this madness continue to tear this city apart.”