Police in Los Angeles played down fears of a crime wave on Monday after an an unusually violent weekend saw more than a dozen people killed across the city.
Los Angeles Police Department Deputy Chief Earl Paysinger described the spike in violent deaths that left 14 people dead as a “blip.”
“The city in fact is not under siege,” Paysinger told reporters at an afternoon news conference. “According to our records, there have been no connections or trends developing, nor can they be inferred as a result of the spike in the number of homicides.”
Paysinger said several of the incidents had been confirmed as gang-related and “investigation of the others is ongoing (as) to whether they, too, may have gang ties.”
Killings in Los Angeles have registered an eight percent increase so far this year, compared to 2007 when the homicide rate fell to a 37-year-low.
Paysinger did not attribute the violence to any reason but speculated that warm weather and higher gasoline prices may have been factors.
“This is no reason to panic. This indeed is a spike that we periodically see,” he said. “It’s nothing to become alarmed about.”