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Slavic Village murder case sparks neighborhood unity against violence

Posted at 10:01 PM, Sep 17, 2019
and last updated 2019-09-17 23:16:36-04

CLEVELAND — Multiple Cleveland block watch and community groups in the Slavic Village neighborhood are working together to fight against violence after the shooting death of 33-year-old Michael R, May II.

May's body was found near the footbridge over I-77 near East 48th Street back in Jan. 2019.

Police said May had been shot several times as he was walking home with groceries for his mother.

JoMarie May said her son's death is just one in a series of violent crimes to plague the Slavic Village neighborhood in 2019.

“It’s awful, I can’t even explain it, he was my baby,” May said.

“I don’t think that any parent should have to bury their child.”

"There have been so many violent crimes in Slavic Village, you can almost be guaranteed that when they find a body, that you’re going to know that person, because it’s so frequent.”

Police report 41-year-old Anthony Balducci has been charged with aggravated murder in May's shoot death.

Neighborhood block watch groups are responding to the violence with a series of bike patrols and block club members are cruising the streets with their vehicles.

Lynda Lewis, President of the Forest City Park Block Watch, told News 5 residents must get involved in their communities in an effort to curb crime and violence.

“My door is open for anyone who has information," Lewis said.

"You need to put the information out there and you need to be involved in your neighborhood.”

Meanwhile, May believes residents need to shake free of fear and collect courage in their effort to slowdown the violence that claimed the life of her son.

"We must work together to help the police," May said.

“When you hide in your house, bad guys take over your streets, so don’t hide in your house, get out on your porch.”

The Forest City Civic Association will hold its next meeting at the New Beginning Missionary Church at 3585 Kimmel Road on Tuesday August 13, 2019 at 7:00 pm.