LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Most neighbors near the intersection of Market Street and Cecil Avenue told WHAS11 they saw more officers driving past their homes Friday.
Two sixteen-year-old girls were shot and killed on Cecil Avenue this week. The shootings happened within hours of each other.
On Thursday, Second Division Major Steve Healey said, "My officers are going to be active out in these neighborhoods." He promised officers would be visible and approachable. He also encouraged people to visit him at the Second Division Station.
On Friday, we knocked on over a dozen doors. All but one person told us they would talk on camera. Many said they were afraid of retaliation.
Several people said they were happy to see the increased police presence. Some said they don't trust the police and extra money spent on patrols should go elsewhere.
One man told us he left Louisville because the violence was too much for him, but these shootings brought him back. His grandmother lives on Market Street. She was sitting on her porch when gunshots went off a block away. Shawn Davis said the thought of his grandmother becoming the next victim was too hard to handle. He said he moved home to look after her.
With a new police presence promised, we asked what he's seen on market street. He said civilians with weapons are more common than police officers. "I have probably seen as ten people walk through with assault [riffles] like just freely, like holding a hanker chief."
So, he's staying close to his grandmother. He's caring for the person who raised him in a city that's grown more violent since the days of his youth.
She thought they were firecrackers. Now, her grandson says, he's staying by her side, hoping she's not the next victim.
Meanwhile, Major Healy said his officers are putting in extra overtime just to be able to patrol these neighborhoods with a short staff. He said, "This is not acceptable anymore, the violent crime is no longer acceptable."