66 people were murdered in Flint in 2012. That ties a record homicide rate set two years ago.
Flint’s political, religious and civic leaders have been trying to do something about the city’s high violent crime rate. But gun violence has claimed more than 60 lives for the second time in three years.
Flint Mayor Dayne Walling issued a statement, saying “it is clear that the problem of illegal and military-style guns is widespread and is a major contributing factor to” the city’s homicide rate.
Walling says “steps will be taken to improve police response times, enforce tough penalties, and work better with the community.”
In November, Flint voters approved a big property tax hike to help pay for the city’s police and fire departments. The money will be used primarily to replace expiring grant funding that’s paying for many Flint police officers and firefighters. There may be enough left over to hire an additional 10 police officers.