West Responds To String Of Shootings In Canton
State lawmaker extends condolences, stresses need to support community safety efforts
June 15, 2017
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State Rep. Thomas E. West (D-Canton) today responded to a series of deadly shootings in Canton by extending his condolences to the families of the victims and stressing the importance of greater state support for community safety efforts. 

“I am deeply saddened by the senseless violence that has taken our neighbors from us,” said West. “These shootings took place right in the neighborhood that I am proud to call home. We need to come together as a community to try to put an end to this violence.” 

The series of three shootings in the last four days have claimed two lives and injured five more. Police suspect that the some of these attacks may stem from a “group-related” dispute. Police say that ShotSpotter, a gunfire alert system that allows law enforcement to more quickly respond to gun violence, was helpful in their work around this recent string of attacks. 

“Right now, we need to do everything that we can to ensure that our communities and law enforcement officers have the resources they need to help keep our neighborhoods safe,” said West. “Repeated state cuts to local communities have stretched the budgets of essential safety services, putting critical technology like ShotSpotter at risk of elimination and limiting the ability of communities to hire the officers they need.” 

The most recent budget proposal, announced by Senate Republicans on Monday, would continue recent trends of reducing the amount of aid that Ohio provides its cities. 

“Today, our thoughts and prayers are with the families of Darian Cundiff and John Dicenzi,” said West. “I know that Canton is a caring town, and I encourage everyone to keep your neighbors in your heart in the coming days. If you have any information about these shootings, please report it to the police.” 

Investigators are urging anyone with information on the shootings to contact the local police department. 

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