Cleveland shootings often target kids, teens

Posted at 12:30 AM, Sep 17, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-17 00:30:52-04

Tuesday night’s shooting death of three-year-old Major Howard is the latest in what’s been a dangerous and deadly summer in Cleveland, especially for children.

Earlier this month, five-year-old Ramon Burnett was killed while playing football on Louise Harris Drive and in April a one-year-old boy was shot in the head and died. looked through our own reporting and other published reports and found at least five children between the ages of 2 and 13 have also sustained gunshot wounds in 2015.

MORE: 16 children under 15 died from gunshot wounds in Cuyahoga County since 2010

We also looked through reports of drive-by shootings and found at least 26 reported in the last year. Those types of shootings increased in the summer months and many were concentrated on Cleveland’s east side.

Cleveland State University criminologist James Chriss said the location is no coincidence. He told that the violence is often rooted in an unstable home life due to institutionally concentrated pockets of inner-city poverty.

“It needs to be some kind of cultural change,” Chriss said. “But if there’s a lack of resources, if there’s chronic poverty or social disorganization…It develops a thin skin where even things that are considered slight, like verbal assaults or whatever, would be possibility of a life or death issue.” reached out to the Cleveland Police Department for our story, but they declined to comment.