LAWTON, OK (TNN) - Officials with the Lawton Police Department say they’ve seen an increase in shootings in recent weeks. Since the first of the month, there have been five confirmed shootings in Lawton, while there only two last month. So, it’s more than doubled, and we just hit the halfway mark of the month.
Police don’t know for sure what’s causing more shootings, but Sgt. Timothy Jenkins said an increase in these types of crime can have something to do with the weather.
The circumstances surrounding the shootings this month do not seem to follow a specific pattern because some involve domestic violence incidents, while others happened during robberies and drive-bys.
"Our utmost priority at this point is keeping our community safe and aware of what they can do to help us out but also aware of what they can do while this is going on," Sgt. Jenkins said.
Regardless of the cause, it's kept detectives and officers out on the street busy. Sgt. Jenkins said officers are being told to be more proactive and talk to the people in their zone.
"Our detectives are going out, they're making contacts, they're talking to the victims of these crimes. They're talking to the people there in the area. 'Do you know somebody?' 'Do you see somebody that doesn't belong?.' So, there's a lot of different steps that we take and a lot of different avenues," he said.
Of the five confirmed shootings, none of the cases have been solved yet. As for why they're happening, Sgt. Jenkins said he isn't sure, but said it's not uncommon to see an increase in crime when the weather gets nicer and people are out more.
Sgt. Jenkins asks that people call the department if they know anything about these and any other crimes happening in the community.
"You hear about more than we do, so we want those tips, we want that information because we want to get those people off the street," Sgt. Jenkins said. "Next time, it could be you or it could be a family member or a friend. So, that's something we don't want. If you're able to give us information to stop the next one from happening, we'll take the lead from there and investigate it."
Sgt. Jenkins said investigators have some leads on possible suspects, but no suspects have been confirmed at this time. If you know anything, you’re asked to call Crime Stoppers of SW Oklahoma at 355-INFO.