NEW ORLEANS (WGNO)— The violent incidents of shootings and murders in New Orleans are mere stats for most people but for families affected by the violence, it’s much more.
Some also see failures at several levels of law enforcement and the city.
Kanitra Wright, is a mother of victims shot this week and she stated, “Keep those animals locked up so another mother won’t have to go through what I’m going through.”
What Wright is going through is the critical injury to one son, Tyven Wright and the murder of her other son Nicholas Carter Tuesday night in the 7th ward. This family’s grief is being echoed across the city and many experts say our officials aren’t doing enough to protect citizens.
Former police chief Dr. Ronal Serpas said, “We’ve got to get past somehow thinking what were are doing is working.”
That sentiment is shared by Councilman-at-Large JP Morrell who takes it a step further accusing the Cantrell administration of ignoring the seriousness of the violence in New Orleans.
“There’s an effort in this city to disguise our crime problem to make sure the tourists keep coming. I’m not here of the tourist I’m here for the people that live here and the people that live in this city know that we have a crime problem. This council has said we have a crime problem. We are waiting for the day that the mayor of the city of New Orleans publicly states we have a crime problem because you cannot solve a crime problem unless you admit we have one,” said Morrell.
As for the Wrights, they’re pain is frustrated by the fact that the accused killer Montreal Baham had been arrested in 2020 for felony possession of a weapon and aggravated assault. Kenitra Wright feels that the city and our system failed her family
“This boy was supposed to be in jail Lord. If he had been in jail and they wouldn’t have let him out, my son wouldn’t be gone,” said Wright.
WGNO received this statement from the district attorney’s office:
The ROR (release of Baham) took place under the Cannizzaro administration in August 2020. DA Williams took office January 11, 2021.
When DA Williams came into office, our office accepted charges for aggravated assault and aggravated assault with a firearm which the defendant plead guilty to aggravated assaulted and received a six month suspended sentence.
WGNO also contacted the Mayor’s office for a response:
“Mayor Cantrell, Chief Ferguson, and the over 1,000 sworn officers of the NOPD are hard at work every day grappling with the rise in violent crime that has impacted every city in this country following the pandemic. The Councilmember could help in that effort by advancing the facial recognition ordinance Chief Ferguson has asked the Council to pass. Restoring that tool to the tool-kit could help move the needle. Everyone has a role to play in making our City more safe.”City Hall Spokesperson