Syracuse (WSYR-TV) -- A violent weekend in the city of Syracuse has police “On the Lookout” for two suspects in two unrelated shootings that left one person dead and seven others injured.
The first incident happened overnight on South Avenue just before 2 a.m. when 23-year-old Rodney Maddux was killed and two others were hurt.
The second shooting happened at a house on Midland Avenue just minutes later when five people between the ages of 19 and 22 were hit with birdshot from a shotgun blast.
Business owners and neighbors nearby say the crimes could have been avoided. Both of the shootings took place at locations where crime cameras were scheduled to be installed last month.
The installation company is still going over the city’s proposed contract. Syracuse Police say the company was just given a copy of the contract just last week.
City lawyers have been going over the complex contract since the 19 new cameras were approved by Common Council two months ago. Now, it’s the company’s turn to approve it. Those involved in the process don’t expect the review to take too long, but Syracuse’s Public Safety Chairman Lance Denno says the delay could cause even more delays in installing the cameras as we approach winter. That makes eager neighbors nervous.
“As a result of the cameras, crime rates dropped dramatically on the Near West Side, and our members everyday fear for their lives with shootings that are ringing out, as is the case over the last week,” said Syracuse United Neighbors Director Rich Puchalski.
Nine cameras were installed in the Near West Side last year and, according to Police Chief Frank Fowler, the cameras have proven to help reduce criminal activity there and solve crimes ranging from homicide to drug investigations.
The company the city approved to install the cameras – Vantage Point Network Systems – has no comment regarding the delay.
Common Council first approved spending $115,000 on the new cameras in October 2011.