NEWBURGH – Mayor Torrance Harvey spoke out last week about Newburgh gun violence in a poem: “55 gunshots made our city blocks hot!!”
His poem on Facebook followed a weekend earlier this month in which the Shot Spotter gun violence detection program counted that much gunfire.
Now, the mayor said that degree of violence is what caught the attention of the feds.
“That put us on the federal radar, federal watch list. The FBI and the federal agencies reached out to our police department and that’s how the tactic team was created,” he said.
It was after that weekend that law enforcement on the local, state, and federal levels said they were joining together to keep the pressure on Newburgh violence in an effort to curb it.
The mayor, who said he is about to publish his second volume of poetry, ended this latest passage:
“We must keep our eyes on the prize during this healthcare crisis. We
Remain in a state of emergency! Stay home unless you are traveling for
Essential business. If you are pulled over by law enforcement simply
Comply with their request and you will be fine.”
Fellow City Councilman Omari Shakur, who is a constant critic of the police, often stating so in less than kind language, wrote on Facebook:
“To the mayor,
Newburgh is 80 percent black and Hispanic. City hall is almost 80 percent white and 63 percent don’t even live in our city.
This is the first time that the City of Newburgh council has had a majority of black and Hispanic members.
We ran together and we won because that 80 percent voted for us because we said we were going to work on solutions for housing, employment, policing, transportation, infrastructure, etc. So… please… Don’t let whoever is whispering in your ear divide us. Don’t try to make this about me.”