Year-to-date, murder rate for 2018 already ahead of 2017

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Trash is piled along the streets near Memorial Stadium, but that neighborhood is where Ernest Ingram has worked as a mechanic for the past 12 years.

"I've been here working sometimes and bullets go to flying and I'd be ducking. This neighborhood is something," said Ingram.

He says it comes with the job now, but in his 68 years in his hometown of Baton Rouge, Ingram says things sure have changed, especially with how children handle their differences now. "Used to have a lot of flights. The kids and what not would be fighting and maybe every now and then, you would hear somebody would get cut with a bottle or something like that. Now it's killings, shootings," said Ingram.

In just a quarter of a mile's distance, three people were gunned down in the past five months. In January, Byron Jenkins was shot in a convenience store parking lot on Scenic Highway. Then in February, Freddie Caddo was found dead in the middle of Fuqua Street. On May 20, Kelvin Howard was shot and killed on N 17th Street.

Across the entire city, at this time last year, there were 24 murders. So far this year, there have been 35. Remember, last year was a record setting year and the city's on track to have even higher numbers than that.

"That didn't surprise me because it is everywhere. It's everywhere. It's not only here, it's all over Baton Rouge. Ain't no place safe anymore, no place safe," said Ingram.

For Ingram, he says when he grew up in the 70s and 80s, it truly did take a village to raise a child, but parents, teachers, and preachers were strict and even spanked a child when needed. He says now, laws scare some people about disciplining their children. He believes that's the problem.

"The police are doing their job. The parents are going to have to do their job too. It can't be no one-sided street here. Everyone is going to have to do their job. If they don't, Baton Rouge is in trouble," said Ingram.

Below is an interactive map that compares the murder rate in Baton Rouge for the first six months of 2017 and the first six months of 2018.

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