Updated: May 21, 2021 06:41 PM
Created: May 21, 2021 05:25 PM
ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — Two-term incumbent Mayor Lovely Warren is facing a challenge from City Council member Malik Evans in the democratic primary for the Mayor of Rochester. On Friday, during a pre-planned press conference, Evans outlined his plan to address the increase in illegal guns and violence.
“It is carnage happening before our eyes and it is damaging the lives of our children… when we went to bed on Friday night, I said man... I hope we don't have a rough night. Seven people got shot last Friday, Saturday night four people got shot. We've got to do something,” he said.
As mayor, Evans says, he’d declare a gun-violence emergency in the City of Rochester and launch a nationwide search for a gun czar.
“This will not be a political patronage position, this will be someone who actually knows what the heck they're doing,” Evans said to a room of supporters and members of the press.
The czar, he says, would facilitate relationships with both local and federal law enforcement to better understand exactly where the illegal guns are coming from and try to cut off the pipeline.
“Currently the ATF does not share trace data with localities, that is a major problem. If we're going to have prosperity in Rochester, we need to get ahead of gun violence. Not only is it a social issue but an economic one,” Evans said.
Evans believes Rochester has been in the national headlines lately for all the wrong reasons.
“The talk should not be about all the drama that we've been seeing over the last nine months, it needs to be focused on our citizens and what's happening to them… we need to make sure that our people are working so much and so hard that they are so tired that they do not have the time to pick up a gun,” Evans said.
A spokeswoman for Mayor Lovely Warren’s campaign did not return a request for details of the Mayor’s plans to address the increase in illegal guns and violence but a few weeks ago, she announced the creation of an Office of Neighborhood Safety that would “coordinate the missions of civilian violence-reduction organizations to give the community a greater role public safety with a unified strategy.”
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