(WMC-TV) – There have been three murders and dozens of shootings in the small Mississippi town of Clarksdale so far this year.
A murder Monday night has some residents scared to go outside.
Action News 5 has covered the increase in violent crimes for the past six months. The increase prompted WMC-TV's Michael Clark to go through police incident reports submitted since April. For a town of about 20,000 people, the statistics were shocking.
There have been three murders inside city limits. Seventeen people suffered gunshot wounds. Twenty-one homes were shot at, and there have been eight armed robberies.
"It scared me so bad last night, I'm even scared to go out you know," said Deorthy Lenard.
Lenard woke up to a round of gunshots. Those shots left an 18-year-old dead and two others injured. She prays daily for answers.
"I pray for the violence to stop everywhere, because it looks like to me a bunch of black on black trying to kill up each other," said Lenard.
Since August, Clarksdale police started recording reports of shots fired. There have been 61 calls from people like Lenard, who reported hearing gunshots too close to home.
"I'm just hoping that all this gang and whatever they doing, and all this shooting, they need to take themselves and get it back together and get back to church," she said.
The police chief was unavailable Tuesday. So far, nobody has been charged in Monday's homicide but the police department is following up on leads for two suspects.