St. Paul community leaders 'heartbroken' after 15 people shot, 1 killed at bar |

St. Paul community leaders 'heartbroken' after 15 people shot, 1 killed at bar

Jay Kolls
Updated: October 10, 2021 11:26 PM
Created: October 10, 2021 10:49 PM

Twin Cities violence prevention leaders say they are dismayed but not discouraged after a shootout at a St. Paul bar killed a young woman and injured 14 others.

The Rev. Runney Patterson of New Hope Baptist Church told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS he will continue leading his 21 Days of Peace campaign on the city’s east side despite a recent surge in homicides and gun violence across the city over the past year.

“We will be out there helping people because we truly believe that a change is coming,” said Patterson. “I would not be out there night after night if I didn’t want a better life for my wife, my daughters, my church and my community, and I want everyone to be able to walk around their neighborhood freely.”

Tyone Terrill, president of the African American Leadership Council, told KSTP every St. Paul resident needs to be willing to step and “say something” when they know something to help either prevent a violent crime or help solve one.

“When it doesn’t involve you, everybody says they won’t snitch, so it’s about our community doing what’s right,” said Terrill. “This won’t be the last one, and if we don’t step up and do some healing and start educating our community about stopping this violence.”

Mayor Melvin Carter called the mass shooting a tragic incident and said it points to a renewed push for more public safety initiatives.

“And, it is just another reminder of how critical it is that we shift our public safety strategies and that we continue to employ the comprehensive, coordinated, data-driven approach that we have brought,” Carter said.

Dora Jones-Robinson, a longtime activist and current St. Paul mayoral candidate, said she supports hiring more police officers to offer a better presence on the street to help deter gun violence.

“Because we need healthy police officers on the streets and on duty,” Jones-Robinson said. “I just want to thank the officers so much for their service and their involvement in our community because it means so much to us that they are still there with boots on the ground doing this work to help us curb this gun violence.

St. Paul now has 32 homicides this year. The highest, single-year total for homicides in the city is 34.

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