BURLINGTON, N.C. (WGHP) — The Burlington Police Department is investigating 10 shootings that happened in July and are believed to be linked.
In the last two days, officers were called to three shootings.
Around 9 p.m. on Saturday, Alamance County deputies responded to Spence Court in Burlington when they were told about a drive-by shooting.
Early on Sunday just after 2 a.m., officers responded to North Church Street. Around 12 hours later, people reported gunfire on the 2000 block of Morningside Drive.
“One is significant in our opinion, but obviously 10 is concerning,” Assistant Chief Chris Gaddis said.
He said that only about a quarter of the shootings have ended with injuries. Others have damaged homes, vehicles and businesses.
“If they don’t hit what they’re going after, that bullet has to go somewhere, so that is our concern that innocent folks or anyone is going to get injured,” he said.
Officers have not provided a motive for the shootings but believe they involve two groups retaliating against each other.
Persons of interest have been identified, but Burlington police have not named suspects in their investigations.
Gaddis said officers have increased patrols in the north and northwest parts of the city in response.
“Citizens need to know just because they don’t see a police car, a marked patrol unit doesn’t mean that we’re not there,” he said.
Mayor Ian Baltutis called on the community to report tips before someone pulls the trigger, saying that there are often signs of escalation.
“Having folks be our eyes and ears helps us prevent a lot of this. We’ve looked back at some of the cases we’ve seen over the past 5-6 years and in many cases, there were indications along the way that showed that this was coming,” he said.
He said the city is focusing on National Night Out events in the community on August 3.
When discussing solutions to community violence, Baltutis said the city also has a Youth Solutions Program focused on gaps where kids may not have access to food security, afterschool care and mentorship.
Officers ask you to call the BPD at (336) 229-3500. For anonymous methods, call Alamance County-Wide Crimestoppers at (336) 229-7100 or by using the mobile App P3 Tips or www.p3tips.com. Tips provided through Crimestoppers may be eligible for cash rewards.