WARREN, Ohio (WYTV) – Police in Warren are investigating a couple of shootings from over the weekend. Now, a city councilwoman is pushing to turn an old fire station into a police substation to help fight the growing amount of violence.
The weekend of gunfire began just before 1 a.m. Saturday when a Trumbull County sheriff’s deputy was pursuing a vehicle he told dispatchers was speeding, ran a red light and didn’t have a license plate light.
“We’re going to be coming eastbound. Shots fired, shots fired! They hit my cruiser,” the deputy said.
Less than a minute later, that same vehicle turned the gun on a Warren police officer too.
“They’re firing shots at me, radio. We’re at Stephens and Northwest. They’re shooting backwards at me,” the Warren police officer said.
Two men in the vehicle ran away after crashing the car in a ditch near the intersection of Norwood Street and Denison Drive.
Meanwhile, on W. Market Street…
“Some lady stopped in the middle of the street. She just keep telling me she needs help and she’s bleeding. Her back window’s gone, I don’t know what happened to it,” a 911 caller said.
According to a police report, the woman had been shot multiple times. She was taken to the hospital for treatment. This all happening within an hour and 15 minutes.
“There must be something going on in our streets, in our community to bring about this level of violence. It has grown to unacceptable levels,” said Pastor Todd Johnson, Second Baptist Church.
Sixth Ward Councilwoman Cheryl Saffold said she experienced the gun violence first-hand while visiting family.
“I overheard gunshots and I immediately had to jump on the floor and start crawling for protection,” Saffold said.
It’s in response to this growing violence, added to the fact the city already reached it’s highest number of homicides in recent history with a few months left in the year, that Saffold is pushing the city administration to move forward with turning the old fire station on Palmyra Road into a police substation.
Saffold said she knows it’ll cost money to fix the building but she considers it an investment.
“This is something that is not only going to be beneficial to my community but it’s going to be beneficial for the entire city,” she said.
“I think it’s a step in the right direction, at least the conversation of it because we have to build relationships,” said Pastor Joseph Walker, Restoration Christian Fellowship Church.