Shootings in Chattanooga compared to last year

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — So far shootings in Chattanooga this year are on par to last year.

“We are very consistent. We actually have the same amount to date, 22 shootings as last year,” said Sgt. Josh May with the Chattanooga Police Department.

Police say they are now able to go deeper into their investigations and differentiate between intentional, accidental or self inflicted shootings.

“What we are seeing is there is a lot of accidental self inflicted and self defense shootings that go on within the city. Actually to date we are down three, what I would term intentional shootings to date,” May said.

And they’ve been cracking down on shootings with the Violence Reduction Initiative. They’ve had to curtail it to Chattanooga.

“We’ve had some successes. We’ve had some failures and we’ve actually kind of put it towards the way Chattanoogans run. Our set up is a little different. Our gang situation is a little bit different than other cities and the way we do things has to reflect that. So figuring out the best way to use the resources that we have has definitely made an impact on these shootings so far,” May said.

There are lots of layers to the Chattanooga Police Department’s crime fighting abilities, VRI is just one of them.

“We are going to continue to lay on different levels to keep the community safe and to put those who are committing the violent, the small amount of individuals, the less than one percent of our population that are responsible for 56 percent of our shootings over the last four years. 52 percent of our homicides.”

And the techniques vary.

“So we are going to do everything we can technologically as well as hitting the streets and doing the old fashion police way,” May said.

Since May 1, 2016, there has been a 6.4 percent decrease in criminal shootings. Murders for that same period are down eight percent.

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