Spike in gun violence in Brantford

BRANTFORD — Brantford Police say there has been a surge in gun violence in the city since the start of 2019.

Since January there have been 16 gun-related incidents in the city, including the seizure of 4 loaded hand guns and 8 shooting incidents resulting in 7 victims and 1 homicide.

According to police all of those instances involved individuals from Brantford, as well as persons connected to several other Ontario communities.

In a statement today Brantford Police said, “These incidents were not random criminal acts; the persons involved are believed to be entrenched within criminal and high-risk lifestyles, and in most cases were known to each other. Regardless, these incidents and the increased presence of guns in our City pose a significant risk to community safety.”

Police announced that on April 8, a new Task Force was created that will focus on gun-related crime in the city.

Brantford Police Chief Geoff Nelson said, “The creation of this Task Force was absolutely necessary. Elimination of gun violence in our City requires a properly resourced and specialized unit to focus its efforts exclusively on those individuals who pose a threat to the safety of our community. These individuals will have the full attention of the Task Force.”

Brantford Police Inspector Scott Williams said, “The behaviour and utter disregard for community safety demonstrated by the persons responsible for gun violence within Brantford will not be tolerated. All incidents will be investigated to the highest standard and degree.”

“It is of great concern that a number of these incidents could have resulted in innocent bystanders being harmed,” said Nelson.

Police said in a statement they “continue to work with community partners and stakeholders to develop and implement immediate and long-term strategies that will help enhance safety for everyone in the community.”

Brantford Police is asking that anyone with information about criminal activity involving guns, or other crimes of violence, to please call the Task Force Tip Line at 519-756-0113 Ext. 2853, or email the Task Force at TaskForce@police.brantford.on.ca

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