Shooting victims’ family hopes for a safer city

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – 22News continues to follow how the Springfield community is coping with the recent spike in gun violence. We spoke with one of the murder victims’ family.

One Springfield family is now mourning the loss of two loved ones. A grandmother whose health deteriorated, and a young cousin.

Nyreesha Bracey told 22News her family was driving from Ohio to Springfield to prepare for the grandmother’s funeral when they heard about Darrell Jenkins.

“My older cousin being one of the victims on a day when were coming…coming to lay my grandmother to rest, it’s just, it’s just really sad. It really hurt our family double time,” Bracey said.

23-year-old Darrell Jenkins was gunned down near Kensington Avenue in Springfield. Friday night dozens of concerned residents joined Jenkins’ family for a prayer vigil.

In the last two weeks, an 18-year-old, a 23-year-old and a 33-year-old died on Springfield streets. Many people at the vigil called those deadly shootings “senseless, unnecessary and heartbreaking.”

Some believe a late night teen curfew may help reduce violence, but they admit, it may not solve everything.

Nicole Gordon said, “I know there’s a lot going on with the younger kids, too, you know, under 18. So it may help a little bit. It may help a lot, but what about older folks?”

In Springfield, there’s no teen curfew, but bars without special permits must shut off music at 1:00 a.m. In Chicopee, anyone under 17 cannot be in a public place from 11:00 at night to 6:00 in the morning on weeknights, and from Midnight to 6:00 on weekends.

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