Durham police chief says city has a gang problem and lack of legislation on gun control hinders efforts

DURHAM, N.C. (WTVD) -- Durham police say they've received several tips about the shooting that killed 9-year-old Zion Person -- but no arrests have been made yet.

Police Chief C.J. Davis said as a mother and member of the community, she is shocked by the tragedy.

Zion is the third child under 18 shot and killed this year.

So how do police plan to fix the problem?

"For me what it looks like is being strategic," Davis told ABC11 on Tuesday. "What we have to do is...we we're working with what we have. And when you work with what you have, you move individuals to maybe shore up my gang unit."

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She said Durham, and the Triangle as a whole, has a gang problem.

Davis believes shifting staff resources could curb this latest round of gun violence.

But she says the lack of legislation on gun control hinders her efforts.

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"We have illegal guns that are being trafficked through our city," she said. "We also have straw buyers...individuals who will buy a gun for someone else. We have legal gun owners who unfortunately don't secure their weapons."

There have been 26 homicides in Durham this year. That's compared to 32 total last year.

Kylik Burnette, 18, was shot and killed at a Durham apartment Monday evening. Michael Lester Morgan, 36, was arrested and charged in his death.

Kylik leaves behind a one-year-old son and a rap career cut short.

"All we wanted to do was be on the road to riches and they just gone take him out like that," cousin Keyshawn Greene told ABC11.

Davis said her office is working diligently to reallocate resources and build community relationships.

She said curbing gun violence is a community effort.
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