Philadelphia hits 300 homicides for the year so far; 18-year-old shot and killed

It happened near the intersection of 52nd Street and Larchwood Avenue.

Wednesday, July 20, 2022
Community gathers for prayer walk as Philly marks 300 homicides
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Community gathers for prayer walk as Philly marks 300 homicides. Annie McCormick reports for Action News on July 19, 2022.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Philadelphia police report a teenager is the city's 300th homicide victim of the year.

It happened just before 10 p.m. Monday near the intersection of 52nd Street and Larchwood Avenue in West Philadelphia.

Police were called to the report of shots fired.

Once on the scene, officers found an 18-year-old man with multiple gunshot wounds to the head and body.

He was taken to a nearby hospital where he was pronounced dead.

He was identified as Lameer Boyd of the unit block of South 51st Street.

No arrests have been made.

Mayor Jim Kenney addressed the ongoing violence during Tuesday's biweekly city violence hearing.

"This past week has been especially difficult with so many senseless shootings. Every active gun violence is an unspeakable tragedy. The fact that our city has lost 300 souls to date this year is devastating," he said.

The only possible silver lining is that, year to date, homicides are actually down 1%. Still, when you consider that shootings are up 5% over this time last year, the murder rate could just as easily be exceeding last year, which ended with the highest annual homicide rate in decades.

Kenney says the solution to this problem remains elusive.

"We spent these past few years confronting a rising epidemic," he says, "and doing everything in our power not only to stop it but continue to better understand why the violence continues."

There were 315 homicides in 2017. The number rose to 562 in 2021.

Meanwhile, the vast majority of people Action News spoke with Tuesday said quite simply, they do not feel safe on the streets of Philadelphia.

Sherrie Quinn of North Philadelphia said, "I am nervous every day. I'm scared every day. I hate to watch the news because every time you watch the news it's just sad and depressing, but you've got to know what's going on in the world."

"I'm scared to walk out my door but I have to walk out either way, so that's a chance I have to take every day," added Darlene Bivins of West Oak Lane.

On Tuesday night, the community gathered in Kensington for a prayer walk.

Wilfredo Pedraza was there holding a sign for his brother Emmanuel Pedraza, who was killed two days before Christmas last year. He was shot during a robbery on East Tioga Street.

"Even though they kill my little brother, I forgive them. I forgive them," said Wilfredo Pedraza.

RELATED COVERAGE: Building it Better Together series on Gun Violence Solutions