NEW ORLEANS — Crime and gun violence continue to rise in New Orleans in the last few days of the year. From Wednesday to Thursday, there were at least 10 shootings, with at least one being fatal. According to crime data analyst, Jeff Asher, New Orleans is on set to have the highest murder rate in the nation, but the homicide rate isn’t the only crime statistic that’s peaking.
Asher reports that 37 women have been murdered in New Orleans this year, the highest since 1996.
Misty Frye, Director of Client Services with the New Orleans Family Justice Center says we’re “in crisis mode,” adding the violence against women is becoming more severe.
“What you would normally see is the normal slap, kick, punch has now turned into gun shots, using vehicles to run you over. It’s happening more often than it used to. We used to go months before seeing a gun shot victim, now we can get five in a week that’s a lot,” Frye said.
NOPD Interim Superintendent, Michelle Woodfork says the crime in the city ebbs and flows, but during the bad years you have to readjust and do something. She appeared on WBOK Thursday and says it’s time the NOPD approaches policing differently in order to lower the crime rate.
“You have to hit all the six pillars of policing for the 21st century. Building trust with community, legitimacy, education and training, safety and wellness of your officers, social media and technology I’m going to bring all this and more to the police department,” Woodfork said.
Frye cites a multiple reasons as the driving factors for the increasing crime, including COVID, natural disasters, economy and price increases in things like food.
Frye says it’s going to get worse if we don’t’ come together and strategize. The Family Justice Center has been working a pilot program, the Advocate Initiated Response Program , which will soon be expanded, partnering with all NOPD districts.
“It’s for us to be able to get to victims and be a support to police department as well to get to victims quicker than what we are at this time,” Frye said.
The New Orleans Family Justice center also works with multiple community agencies like the District Attorneys office, to serve victims and their families.