Syracuse (WSYR-TV) - Saturday’s death of a homeless woman living under the I-690 bridge at Herald Place has rocked a Syracuse community still grappling with the death of a homeless man whose body was found after a fire beneath the I-690 and I-81 interchange earlier this month.
On Wednesday, friends of 42-year-old Michelle Noce gathered to celebrate her memory.
Police are not calling Noce’s death a homicide, but they are calling it suspicious. Now, many of them are calling for justice.
Noce has been living on the streets for years, but her family didn’t realize her predicament until July.
“She was trapped. People offered her help, family members offered her help, but she was trapped,” said her cousin Kyla Kelly.
Kelly hopes the city of Syracuse can find a solution to its growing homeless problem sooner rather than later.
Places like the Rescue Mission are working to decrease the homeless problem in Syracuse. But this year they're seeing more need than ever before.
In 2011, there were a little more than 40,000 overnight stays at the Rescue Mission’s emergency shelter. They project more than 44,000 this year.
"Everyone is trying to get their arms around what is causing this uptick in homelessness in this community and right now we are busy trying to respond to the need as it presents itself at our door every night,” said Rescue Mission Executive Director Alan Thornton.
The Mission is currently adding extra beds to make more room for people.
Ultimately, they’re hoping to move people into affordable permanent housing.