Newport News

NN police chief says he doesn't see the outrage he should following child shootings

5 juveniles have been shot in Newport News since June 1st

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) -- Two weeks into the job, Newport News Police Chief Steve Drew said he is disappointed on several fronts with the climate he has witnessed following a series of child shooting victims.

"I don't see the outrage that I would like to see or expect," Drew said. "I need to see that from my department and I need to see that from the community." 

Since the beginning of June, five juveniles have been shot in Newport News.

On Friday, Drew led a community engagement walk through the Cottage Grove apartment complex. It was there a 6-year-old was shot on June 2. More recently, a man died at the hospital after being shot within the complex June 15.

“There has been a little bit of violence in this community," Drew said. "The apartment management called us yesterday and we met with them to talk about their concerns."

The conversation led to Friday's walk, during which a group of nearly 100 officers and community leaders went door to door to talk to residents. Drew said the goal is to increase communication within the community.

"Residents don't always speak out," Drew said "They are in fear, they are afraid we are going to knock on their door, or that their name is going to get released, or they are going to figure out who is providing information. We are not about that."

Melissa Colton has lived in the complex for 4 years and said the presence on Friday was comforting.

"I mean this could be a very nice neighborhood. But once the sun goes down, you never know what is going to happen," Colton said. "If we all work together, maybe we can clean the neighborhood up."

Newport News Police say they will continue to have Community Engagement walks throughout the summer.


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