Madison Mayor, Police Chief Call For End To Rising Gun Violence

Officials Say Long- And Short-Term Solutions To Be Considered

Shamane Mills/WPR

Three shootings in the Madison area during the last month have brought the city’s homicide total to five this year. City leaders and law enforcement officials are looking for ways to stem the increase in gun violence.

Madison police say they’ve enlisted the help of the FBI to solve two gas station shootings and one outside a pub, and investigators believe the shootings are connected.

When asked during a press conference on Wednesday about the possibility of the city holding a gun buy back program, Mayor Paul Soglin noted that was done decades ago and it worked.

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“Since that time, studies have been conducted which say that gun buy back programs are not particularly effective,” he said.

Madison Police Capt. Jim Wheeler notes guns now are expensive and people in tough neighborhood might carry for protection.

“We’ve got Glocks with 30-round magazines We have AR15s out there and I’m pretty sure people aren’t going to give up an AR15 or a Glock,” he said.

Community groups and Common Council members have suggested improving employment and housing as a way to stem the violence.