HAMPTON, Va. (WAVY)- Hampton police are investigating the city’s sixth homicide this year, just 30 days into January. Last year, the city saw 24 homicides.
Police say 39-year-old Dwight McKinley was shot and killed on Aberdeen Rd. yesterday. There are no suspects in custody.
Pastor Thurman Leonard of Restoration Church told 10 On Your Side he performs many of the funerals on the Peninsula, and that as gun violence intensifies, the ages of victims coming through his church in caskets are getting younger.
“Last year I did a funeral for a 14-year-old, a 15-year-old, and a 16-year-old, and to me that’s pathetic. That’s sad. Sad,” he said of the killings.
He said that he regularly comforts grieving parents and grandparents.
“You’re going to hurt grandmothers, grandfathers, sisters, brothers. You hurt everyone. And sometimes we don’t think that far,” he said. “It’s easy to pull a trigger, but when you pull a trigger and that bullet comes out, it has no name it could hit someone innocent. There’s going to be consequences.”
He said that community leaders, faith leaders, and citizens coming together will be key to solving the gun violence plaguing the community.
“We all have to do something about it. Either you’re a part of the problem or you’re a part of the solution,” he said.