Mom asks for help dealing with constant shootings in neighborhood

Photo: WKRN

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A Nashville mother of two school-age children is asking for more police patrols and security due to repeated shootings outside her south Nashville apartment.

Since June, Tracy Crenshaw told News 2 shootings outside her home at the Tony Sudekum Apartments have become commonplace.

She said her two children slept on the floor of their home Monday night in fear that stray bullets from a shooting would come into their home.

“Last night you could hear the bullets just hitting the rails,” Crenshaw said. “It continued for about 30 minutes before it stopped and then it started back up.”

A shell casing was found still lying on the sidewalk outside her home.

Photo: WKRN
Tracy Crenshaw said her two children slept on the floor of their home Monday night in fear that stray bullets from a shooting would come into their home. (Photo: WKRN)

Crenshaw said she and her neighbors have called police before, but the fear of retaliation keeps them from calling as often as there are shootings.

“No one should have to live like that,” she said. “No one should have to raise their kids in an environment that is unsafe.”

According to Metro police, so far in 2016 there have been 43 reported aggravated assaults, 14 are classified as domestic violence related.

At this same time last year, there 28 reported aggravated assaults and four were tied to domestic violence.

Metro police said the increase in aggravated assaults could be attributed to increase reporting of domestic violence, which the police have told victims to do when attacked.

Aggravated assaults include incidents involving guns but also include attacks without guns.

As part of ongoing efforts to improve safety, the police host a monthly community meeting at St. Luke’s Presbyterian Church located at 135 Lewis Street every first Wednesday of the month at 5 p.m.

It is free and open to the community.

The Hermitage Precinct Commander and his staff attend the meetings to hear the concerns of people in the area and answers questions.

Photo: WKRN
Photo: WKRN

News 2 also spoke to Metropolitan Development and Housing Agency.

MDHA spokeswoman Jamie Berry said the housing authority has added security cameras both on the property at Sudekum and in the surrounding area. In all, the housing authority has added 96 cameras across all of MDHA properties.

They have also partnered with Metro-Nashville police to create a MDHA Task Force that targets crime at the various MDHA properties in Nashville.

Community Leader Clemmie Greenlee said she wants more done.

She is calling on the mayor and other elected officials to come to the neighborhoods and meet with folks living there.

“We need all the people from the top to come down here to the bottom,” she said. “Where are all the guns coming from?”

She continued, “You would not have all of these shootings and murders if you didn’t have all these guns. “

News 2 heard from others in the area who did not want to be on-air. They said they too have to take cover frequently because of gunshots in the area.

According to Crenshaw, almost all of the shootings start with a verbal argument. She said she can hear it from her apartment before it then escalates into gunshots.

Treyonta Burleson, 14, was shot and killed behind Crenshaw’s apartment in November following a verbal altercation with another group of girls.

Eighteen-year-old Antwana Smith is charged with criminal homicide in that case.

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