CLOVIS, N.M. (KRQE) – Clovis residents met Thursday in a community meeting after a man murdered his own mother in Clovis last week and a series of other violent crimes last month. Many are saying enough is enough.
This comes after a string of violent crimes last month: a man was charged last week with killing his mom, a teen killed in an apartment two weeks ago, and another teen killed in a shooting at the beginning of August.
The recent wave of violent crimes in the city of Clovis is alarming community members and city leaders alike. “We obviously do have issues much like the rest of the state of New Mexico, and even the rest of this, that the country does in terms of, you know, violent crimes, and unfortunately, homicides, and it’s very, it’s very, it’s very sad. It’s heartbreaking to see that happening in our community,” said the Mayor of the city of Clovis, Mike Morris.
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Members of the community met to discuss the recent rise in violent crimes, especially those involving youth. “I have three kids, three daughters and three grandkids. And I have a granddaughter, they just started school. So, it’s a huge deal for me to make sure that my family feels safe. My neighbors feel safe. The whole community feels safe because it’s happening everywhere,” said Josefita Griego, a community member.
One of the concerns, many don’t feel safe coming forward and reporting crimes. “I believe that when there’s a criminal activity going on, that there’s going to be telltale signs. And we need to begin to draw attention to those telltale signs before that action occurs rather than the morning. And afterwards,” said Pastor Dan Murrell.
Despite the increase in violent crime, it is not the worst things have been. So far, the city has seen five murders this year, but in 2004, they had 14. To fight the problem, community members want better communication between residents, police, and the city. “We need to, you know, try to bridge the gaps between the city, the police and the community. I mean, there’s a big, huge gap, there’s people aren’t calling in crimes,” said Griego.
City leaders agree that communication on all levels is what is needed in this usually tight-knit town.“We need to be watching our neighborhoods, and reporting any suspicious activity, and certainly, any crime that we see happening, and give Clovis Police Department a chance to get on that immediately and get it taken care of,” said Mayor Morris.
Mayor Morris says that he and city commissioners will hold community meetings with neighbors later this month to gauge concerns and find ways to address them. Another concern citizens have is police response times. Like most places, Clovis says they need more officers and dispatchers.