Springfield Mayor, Police Commissioner seek justice after apparent increase in gun crimes

Mayor Sarno wants stricter bail regulations for violent offenders

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – There have been multiple shootings in the city of Springfield this week.

Springfield city officials want violent criminals behind bars.

“We’re going to hunt you down and we are going to get you, and we are hopeful the courts will lock you up for a long time,” Said Mayor Domenic Sarno.

The statements came on Friday, after the Hall of Justice was locked down for shots fired outside Juvenile Court.

Police arrested two 21-year-olds, Terence Montgomery and Steven Keita.

Keita had allegedly hit someone in the head with a bottle outside the courthouse, and Montgomery had pulled out a handgun and shot it in the air.

Both are charged with assault and battery among other charges and will be arraigned in Springfield District Court on Monday.

Springfield police have increased their presence in neighborhoods where this violence is occurring. Police Commissioner John Barbieri said most of the time these aren’t random acts of violence, and are gang related.

On Thursday afternoon, a man shot several bullets into a crowd on the corner of Euclid and Belmont Avenue. A 19-year-old woman was shot in the buttocks and a 10-year-old girl was hit in the leg. They were both taken to Baystate Medical Center and are expected to be okay. Police are still searching for the suspect and are hoping the older victim becomes cooperative.

Javier Galarza, a Springfield resident, told 22News: “It’s sad, because I see a lot of kids around here walking around and stuff like that and you know it’s…You know you think your kid is safe coming back from school or something, with Forest Park School being up the street and whatnot but it’s just getting tough.”

On Wednesday, a man was attacked by a group of men as he got out of his car on Osgood Street. He was shot several times, made it to the hospital and is expected to survive. Police are still looking into the motive.

Mayor Sarno said the city of Springfield will continue to put pressure on lawmakers for stricter bail for violent offenders, but the community must also help police in seeking out violent individuals.

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