Surge of violence hits borough

Bullets rained down on the Bronx throughout Thanksgiving weekend, as shooters left borough residents dead and wounded in Fordham, Longwood, and Tremont and near Yankee Stadium.

Borough leaders gathered at the Bronx County Court Building on Monday, November 23 to address a series of stray bullet shootings and confront gun violence. But at least four Bronx residents were laid low between then and Tuesday, December 1.

Police Department statistics list six murders in the Bronx for the 28-day period that ended on Sunday, November 29, up from two murders for the same 28-day period in 2008. The statistics list 97 murders in the borough for the year to date, down from 119 murders as of November 29 in 2008.

“There has been a surge of violence,” Community Board 6 district manager Ivine Galarza said.

Kenny Martinez, 25, was shot dead in front of his Southern Boulevard apartment building at around 9 p.m. on Sunday, November 29, police said. Issi Dominguez, 17, died when he was shot in the head at around 2:10 near E. 182nd Street and Valentine Avenue, also on November 29, police said. Dominguez was in a crowd of some 12 people, newspapers reported.

A16-year old female Hispanic was shot in the chest on Hughes Avenue near E. 179th Street at around midnight on Saturday, November 28 and listed in stable condition at St. Barnabas Hospital, police said. Shots left two men and woman wounded at a store on the Grand Concourse between E. Fordham Road and E. 192nd Street at around 6 p.m. on Thanksgiving, police said. On Wednesday, November 25, police found Louis Vicente, 29, shot dead in a parked car near Yankee Stadium. And on November 23, Christopher Downer, 32, was reportedly shot dead in his East Tremont apartment.

The November 23 Day of Outrage event, hosted by Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., focused on gun violence perpetrated by teens and on the innocent victims of street warfare. Diaz Jr. hopes to secure funds for street outreach and a youth council.

In September, a stray bullet killed 25-year old Aisha Santiago in Mott Haven. In October, another stray bullet killed 92-year old Sadie Mitchell in Wakefield. On Monday, November 16, stray bullets hit 15-year old Vada Vasquez in Morrisania and 19-year old Felix DelValle on Prospect Avenue.

Heidi Hynes, who runs the Mary Mitchell Family and Youth Center steps from where DelValle was shot, fears for the children in her after-school programs. Persistent poverty has bred a culture of violence in the neighborhood, Hynes said. She thinks the city needs to invest more money in programs for teens.

“The city has failed our neighborhood,” Hynes said. “The police are doing a good job but we can’t throw everyone in jail.”

Hynes and Galarza hope to bring neighborhood leaders together against gun violence. The 48th Precinct knows that Prospect Avenue is a trouble spot, Galarza said. Police have made arrests in DelValle’s murder and the shooting on Hughes Avenue, Galarza added.

Reach reporter Daniel Beekman at 718 742-3383 or

More from Around NYC