Hamilton police create gun violence task force in response to shooting increase

Hamilton police have established a new gun violence task force following an increase in shootings in the city.

According to Police Superintendent Ryan Diodati, there have been nine shootings in Hamilton so far this year — triple the number at this time in 2018.

Hamilton police introduce measures in response to spike in shootings

“Most of the shootings have been targeted, a couple have not, but one shooting in our community is too many,” said Diodati. “While they are targeted for the most part, there is a risk to public safety”

“If bullets are flying in our community, we need to be concerned about that and frankly, it’s unacceptable.”

The task force will be made up of 18 full-time officers, including members of the Guns and Gangs Unit and members of divisional HEAT teams, and it will be in effect starting this weekend.

WATCH: Hamilton police say victim in fatal shooting has organized crime links (September 2018)

Mayor Fred Eisenberger says he appreciates police taking quick action on the issue.

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“I think we’d all agree that gun violence at any level is totally unacceptable,” said Eisenberger. “Even though it might be targeted, there’s potential for unintended consequences.”

The most recent shooting happened during a road rage incident on Wednesday morning and police are still searching for a suspect in that case.

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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