Philadelphia nears 500 homicides, community members call for cease-fire ahead of holidays


PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) — Philadelphia police are investigating a shooting that left a man dead on Tuesday night.

It happened around 10:30 p.m. on the 6200 block of Woodland Avenue in Southwest Philadelphia.

Police say the man was shot in the head and pronounced dead at the scene.

No arrests have been made in the case.

As the city inches closer to the grim benchmark of 500 homicides, some community organizations are calling for a truce ahead of the holidays.

A coalition of community members, leaders and organizations are coming together to call for a city-wide “holiday truce” and to raise funds to support holiday cease-fire events.

According to the latest Philadelphia police homicide data, 499 homicides have been recorded in the city, which is a 13% increase from last year.

This weekend saw several killed, including a young mother who was shot dead in front of her children, and a pregnant woman unloading baby shower gifts from her car.

Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw said Tuesday morning, “One, it’s sad that we’re watching for any number, but we also have to realize it’s not the number of people killed, it’s the hundreds of thousands of people impacted beyond those deceased.”

Mazzie Casher, who co-created Philly Truce App and is part of the Zero Homicides Now movement, said when people see they’re not alone, they get a little bit more encouraged.

“The same way the knuckleheads do when they’re amongst each other, they feel hyped to do something because they have each other’s support. Now we’re trying to present that same support for the citizens who know better,” said Casher.

The first event takes place Wednesday, November 24, at 12 p.m. at Muhamad Park and Christian Stronghold Baptist Church located at 47th and Lancaster Avenue.

Over the last 48 hours, volunteers with Partners in Peace have knocked on hundreds of doors, pleading for the violence to stop.

“They should love each other instead of fighting each other,” said 9-year-old David, one of the group’s youngest volunteers.

At New Options More Opportunities Tuesday night, the topic was about what students want to see from their next school superintendent. But the city’s violence was front and center for 8th grader, Sadiyah.

“I don’t know if I could do the wrong thing against somebody where they would hold a grudge against that, and the next time they see me in public I could get shot,” said Sadiyah.

City leaders are scheduled to discuss to ongoing gun violence problem during a briefing on Wednesday morning.

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