Rockford Crime Spike

Rockford+Crime+Spike

Lauren Shelton, Reporter

      Rockford has unfortunately become notorious for high crime rates and in recent weeks, a huge spike in violent crime has occurred. In the last year, Rockford’s homicide rate has been the highest in over two decades. More than half of the killings, 18 of them, were due to gun deaths. Over the last two years, there has been a 26% increase in illegal guns captured. In 2016, the number reached 242 guns seized by the Rockford Police. The police force has been working overtime to try and combat the crime. Many officers have been putting in extra hours and trying to complete cases, but it is proving to be very difficult.

     Just a few nights ago, a 27-year-old man was confronted by a single gunman when he had multiple shots fired at him. The victim was only struck in the forearm, but authorities are still continuously working to identify the shooter.

     “I see some of the same problems Elgin used to have, in Rockford now. It kind of goes with the gun violence, and the drugs, and the streets gangs. That’s where your problems are,” said Commander Dan O’ Shea of the Elgin Police Department who is currently working with Rockford Police.

     New programs and ways of allowing the public to speak up about the crime are being pushed. Police leaders are urging the public to come forward and call to tell any information they might have concerning cases or possible suspects. In the end, as local crime surges, everyone else needs to come together and help combat it.