Wilmington Police on Tuesday identified the city's latest gun violence fatality.
They identified Kenyotta Manuel as the 27-year-old man shot dead in Cool Spring Park along the 1000 block of North Van Buren Street around 7 p.m. on Monday, September 16, 2019.
Manuel became the city's fifth gun violence-related fatality since Friday, September 13, 2019. He was Wilmington's 79th shooting victim on the year.
Mayor Mike Purzycki released the following statement on Tuesday addressing the sudden increase in gun violence around the city:
"The shooting events of recent days and weeks remind us just how much of a constant struggle it is to put into place a more consistent reduction of gun-involved crime. It is disheartening to see this occur, especially when we have been making a great deal of progress in the past year or so to improve public safety. Crime is unpredictable, which is why incidents that begin to happen more frequently than we have become used to jolt us as they do. Unfortunately, some things do stay consistent, such as the criminal records that are attached to most of the shooting perpetrators and victims. It confirms what we have known for years, which is that just a small percentage of people are producing most of the gun-related crime. I want our residents, visitors and business owners to know that we are committed more than ever to mitigating this violent activity and arresting those who are part of it. When crime increases, it just causes us to double down even more. We will continue our community engagement efforts which have resulted in more support than ever for Police Chief Robert Tracy’s respectful and effective policing plan. I am confident that we will bring the current increase in violent incidents under control. The clear majority of us who represent and support the good things that are happening in Wilmington have to stay together and stay committed to making our City safer."
Manuel's death remained under investigation, and anyone with information regarding this fatality was urged to contact Wilmington Police at 302.576.3660 or Delaware Crime Stoppers at 1.800.TIP.3333.