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Akron residents say enough is enough after drive-by shootings continue to target their neighborhood

Posted at 11:43 PM, May 13, 2018
and last updated 2018-05-14 07:11:12-04

A call for change and a cry for help, as the number of drive-by shootings in Akron are seemingly on the rise.

Residents who live in and around where these shootings happened are now concerned for their safety.

Only News 5 spoke with those neighbors who say enough, is enough.

Related: Three shot outside Akron home by suspect in car

“His kids were in the front yard when it happened,” said Oscar Blair who saw the shooting on Florida Avenue happen right before his eyes.

“It sounded like firecrackers at first, I realized it really wasn't, I grabbed my phone, I started running down the street, and I called 911,” he said.

The other shooting, happening here on Manchester Road just 3 hours earlier, left one man dead and another injured. All while a 5-year-old was in the backseat when the victims were shot.

“The city used to be a wonderful city to live in,” said Marcus Bennett, who has been born and raised in Akron.

We counted at least 8 known shootings in the city within the last month.

“Something has to give,” said Bennett.

Related: One dead, one injured in Akron shooting

Blair says his biggest concern is children, to the point that he’s planning to leave.

“If there’s somebody being careless and coming around here and do something like that, while these kids are out here, I don’t want to be here,” said Blair.

That’s where Michael Irby’s anti-violence organization, 100 black men is trying to step in.

“One of our main focuses is to try to catch the kids at a young age”

But as the president of the group he says Akron isn’t like other cities, like Cleveland. They’re having to play catch up with the recent crime and it’s been a struggle to get people organized around the effort.

“Hopefully things will get better,” he said.

100 black men hopes to get their group up and running in the next few weeks, so they can start mentoring kids, hoping to put a dent in the city’s violence.