Community response helped nab Mother's Day shooting suspects

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wwltv.com

Posted on May 16, 2013 at 10:09 PM

Updated Thursday, May 16 at 10:21 PM

Tania Dall / Eyewitness News
Email: tdall@wwltv.com | Twitter: @taniadall

NEW ORLEANS -- It took just days for police to arrest six people including the alleged Mother's Day shooter.  Law enforcement agencies and city officials say that is mainly because the community acted quickly.

"By Monday morning the volume of tips really increased," Darlene Cusanza, executive director for Crimestoppers, said.
 
When surveillance video of Sunday's second line shooting went public, the tips came fast and furious.

"We got names. We did get possible locations, sightings of the individuals. We knew at that time that there was probably more then one shooter from the information," Cusanza said.

Through Crimestoppers, Cusanza says surveillance footage, cell phone images and a flurry of tips helped investigators track down Akein Scott, his brother Shawn and four alleged accomplices.
 
The group of six are now behind bars. Cusanza says the $10,000 cash reward will likely be split between several tipsters after any indictment happens.

 "That's what law enforcement did; they looked at all of those photos, individualized and pulled people out one by one in the frames to see if we could ID them," Cusanza said.

 On Thursday afternoon, Mayor Mitch Landrieu thanked the public for its help. "It cannot be said enough, the people of New Orleans have made this happen, quite frankly, because we as a community have said enough is enough."

Since the shooting, ProjectNOLA says it has started working with property owners in the 7th Ward neighborhood to install more crime cameras.
 
A group of anonymous neighbors created a Facebook page called SafeSeventh Ward.  Their goal is to take back a neighborhood that's become overrun by crime. A member tells Eyewitness News their first priority is more surveillance in the area.

The group says because not everyone in their neighborhood can afford crime cameras a special on-line fund through Project Nola has been set up. If you'd like to make a donation, click here.

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