Residents reeling over deadly Springfield shooting

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) –  Friends and family are mourning the loss of a teenager who was shot and killed Monday night in Springfield. 22News spoke with residents about the fear of violence, and the struggle to try and escape it.

An 18-year-old Springfield woman was shot and killed on Union Street just before midnight Monday. People who live in the neighborhood wish to remain anonymous. They told 22News they fear for their lives, and the lives of their children.

“Kids in this area cannot be outside because it’s just not safe. This has been the fourth or fifth shootout since I lived there,” said a Springfield resident who’s lived in the neighborhood for eight months.

Police found Lenezzia Clarke lying on the ground in front of 550 Union Street.  She had been shot several times, and died from her wounds.  Clarke’s killing is Springfield’s third homicide of 2014.  Springfield residents say when they first moved in to Union Street and a shooting would happen, tons of residents would rush out to try to help the victim. However now, they say people just turn and look the other way.

“You call 911, you did it, good. But that officers going to show up at your doorstep asking more questions and that’s just what we can’t afford, to be seen,” said another Springfield resident.

However, residents stress just because Union Street is part of a bad neighborhood, it doesn’t mean everyone living there is a bad person.

“Hardworking families, they get up and work and try to make money to provide for their families,” said another anonymous resident.

Residents struggling to save enough money to one day, move to a safer place. If you have any information on Monday night’s shooting, call Springfield Police at 787-6355.

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