First Friday Shootings - Police Step Up Patrols in Augusta - WJBF-TV ABC 6 Augusta-Aiken News, Weather, Sports

First Friday Shootings - Police Step Up Patrols in Augusta

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Coverage you can count on begins with the First Friday celebration in downtown Augusta.

This one falling on the anniversary of a multiple shooting on Broad Street.

One year ago this weekend, 6 people were shot after First Friday... they weren't seriously injured, but since there have been serious assaults downtown, including the brutal beating of a couple on the Riverwalk.

Police cars, crime scene tape, and flashing blue lights filled the streets of downtown Augusta a year ago after First Friday ended.

6 people were shot  and police say those suspects are still on the run.

They believe the shootings were gang related-- but to this day, a year later, they have no proof.

Lt. Calvin Chew says," We looked into it, if we can get further information we would be glad to still follow up on the case.

Since that night, the fear of becoming a victim forced many people off the streets of downtown, Augusta for a long time.

Felton Mitchell says, "My business still hasn't gotten back on its feet."

This is why the Richmond County Sheriff's office is adding positions to help prevent crimes.

Chew says, "We do have people that are studying the statistics and also looking at certain areas on where the best positions to be down in that area."

For major events like First Friday -- Lt. Calvin Chew says they have more than 10 officers patrolling the streets. Some are undercover; others are there to monitor specific crimes and leads.

Chew explains, "And we're going to continue whenever there's a need  to add more officers downtown. Wherever there's a need to see where we can add more officers.

That means the Richmond County officers will work 12 hour shifts. This way they can cover crimes that occur at all times of the day, even after large events.

"We will also have them in new uniforms, which are more visible to the public, "says Chew.

Lt. Chew wouldn't comment on where the funding is coming from for the extra patrols-- however he ensures it is happening in order to provide the best public safety for you and your families.

If you have tips on the six suspects please contact the Richmond County Sheriff's Office at 706.821.1080

http://www.augustaga.gov/index.aspx?nid=294

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