Alarming spike in the number of shootings around Yakima - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Alarming spike in the number of shootings around Yakima

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YAKIMA, Wash.--  We're looking into what seems like a big increase in the number of shootings happening in Yakima.

There's about a week and a half left in June and so far, Yakima police say they've had 16 cases of gun fire in the city this month, an alarming number for folks living in town.
Captain Rod Light says the type of shootings have varied. They've seen several drive-by's, the man shot in front of Safeway, and gun fire over drugs.

Unfortunately, it's hard to find a reason to explain the recent increase. Captain Light says in most cases though, gang members are to blame.

"In the gang culture, they're not afraid to use these handguns, or rifles, or whatever they're using. They seem to go to the gun quicker and more often then they used to in years past. It's becoming more violent," said Capt. Light.

Police say there's usually an increase in crime during the summer months too. As more kids finish with school, the gang activity goes up and with it, violent crime.

Police are still investigating many of the incidents, but in several cases they've made arrests and gotten those guns off the streets.