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NYC Mayor To Name Gun Violence Czar Amid Shooting Surge

With the number of shootings in New York City still at high levels, Mayor Eric Adams is expected to appoint a "gun violence czar" just as the summer's traditional spike in firearm-related violence looms, the New York Times reports. The Adams administration has also considered declaring a state of emergency related to the surge in gun violence. Since taking office in January, Adams has assigned more police to the subway system while reviving an anti-gun unit that the previous police commissioner abolished after it was repeatedly implicated in abuses. It was not clear what the gun violence czar would do.

From 2019 to last year, shooting incidents doubled in New York City, to 1,562 from 777. The last time the number of shootings in the city reached that level was 2006. Adams casts the crime rate as grave and condemned those who question the police. Adams has attracted his own criticism for taking a lenient stance toward past mistakes by friends and high-level staff members. His planned pick for gun violence prevention chair appears to fit that trend. He is expected to name Andre Mitchell, founder of Man Up!, a Brooklyn anti-violence group. The group was criticized by the Department of Investigation in 2019 for poor administration and for violating its contract with the city. Mitchell said he would set up job and resource fairs in communities that have been particularly hit hard by gun violence, to better connect New Yorkers with employment and services. Elizabeth Glazer, formerly of the Mayor's Office of Criminal Justice, praises Mitchell's organizational work, but is disappointed in the late timing of Adams action. The mayor initially believed he would be able to turn the tide on crime in February. Since then, the number of shootings has remained stubbornly high.


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