12 people shot in Charlotte over holiday weekend

Police are stepping up patrols in light of the gun violence, and the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department called in every available officer for help.

The youngest victim, 7-year-old Kevin Rodas, was shot and killed while playing in his front yard during a family party Saturday.

CMPD Deputy Chief Jeff Estes said it's been a trying weekend for his officers and the Charlotte community.

The latest shooting happened Monday night in southwest Charlotte, police said.

In the neighborhood where the 7-year-old was shot, another woman who lived just a block away died from gunshot wounds hours later.

Estes said police do not know if any of the shootings are related or if the victims were intentionally targeted. He also said high-powered assault rifles were used in one or more of the shootings.

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The gang unit came into work during the holiday weekend.

He said the violence is an imminent threat to the public and everyone in the community should be concerned.

Former FBI Assistant Director Chris Swecker spoke about the strategy behind CMPD’s response.

The department immediately brought in special units to investigate gangs and firearms putting an extra emphasis on getting high-capacity, high-powered rifles off the streets.

“Tempers tend to flare, the guns are available, the criminals are on the street and that's a volatile cocktail,” Swecker said.

Part of the problem is that fewer gun offenders are going to jail and when they do, it’s not for long, he said.

“These are repeat offenders over and over again. Somehow they get out and get their hands on guns again,” Swecker said. 

Read more here.

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