WILMINGTON, Delaware (WPVI) -- Police in Wilmington, Delaware are investigating three shooting incidents on Monday night that left five people dead and three others injured, including a young child.
Around 8:23 p.m. on the 1100 block of West 2nd Street, police say a gunman shot a 30-year-old woman, a 19-year-old woman and a 12-year-old girl. Both women died from their injuries. The child is listed in stable condition.
Police say the 32-year-old gunman died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. The shooting appears to be domestic-related.
The mayor's office says two additional shootings Monday night were due to street violence. In those incidents, two people were killed and two others were injured.
"Last night was just brutal," said Mayor Mike Purzycki on Tuesday morning. "It hurts. I woke up this morning and did the tally and it was really heartbreaking for me."
Purzycki, like so many other local leaders across the country, is seeing the surge in gun violence.
"Aside from an emotional pathology that exists everywhere, we just have this grotesque proliferation of guns," said Purzycki.
The Action News Data Journalism team worked with the city to crunch the numbers comparing the violence to last year. So far, we found Wilmington saw 68 shooting incidents with 91 victims in 2021. Last year, the city had four more incidents but the same number of victims. But the city's murder rate is up 67% in 2021 with 20 people killed.
Residents we spoke with are tired of the violence.
"Where are the guns coming from? It's like we're in the wild wild west," said Loretta Dickerson of Wilmington.
"Bullets have no names, please stop. It's crazy out there," said Mildred Munce, adding that she's scared to go outside in her neighborhood.
Stephen Bruns, a former Boston police officer who now lives in Wilmington, said, "There needs to be more support of our police. There's got to be a more safer way to do it. And when they catch the criminals with the guns, they face the law."
Longtime Wilmington resident Tyrik Witcher said he still believes there is a correlation between the rise in violence and COVID restrictions.
"Being in a city where there's nothing to do for a lot of adults, even teens, coming off of COVID, people are bound to do whatever they need to do," he said.
Wilmington Police Chief Robert Tracy was among several law enforcement officers who gathered at the White House recently to discuss President Joe Biden's strategy to reduce gun crimes.