Breaking the Code of Silence
In the weeks after the mass shooting on Danzig Street at a community barbeque in July, police increased their presence in the area and others across the city to try and curb violent crime, and now say they need help breaking the so-called "code of silence" in some neighbourhoods.
Earlier this month, police held a community meeting hosted by chief Bill Blair to try and reassure residents that police were doing what they could to keep the area safe and address their concerns.
Police also issued a very public appeal for information into the alleged involvement of the Galloway Boys street gang in a number of shootings, including the gunfire on Danzig in the summer, saying they needed help from the public to put them behind bars.
"We need to establish trust and we need to have people come forward," says Inspector Greg McLane, unit commander of the homicide squad. "Not only to solve crimes that have already occurred, but to assist us in the deterring of crime."
Is the effort working?
On Danzig Street, Grace says she thinks so. She believes if her neighbours are more comfortable with police, they might be willing to talk if they knew about a crime or saw something criminal.
"We like to see the police presence around the area," she says. "(It's) a good relationship because some of them even wave when they pass me."
But Leanna isn't so sure.
"When they (the police) see people they stop them," she says, thinking that might turn people off from being more forthcoming with police.
"They (the police) question them (residents) and ask who they are and where they're from. It's uncalled for if they didn't do anything."
McLane says the police presence is needed.
"The reason why the police are in the community is to ensure there is safety," he says. "When police are there the offenders are not there. Then from that, the people in the community can enjoy some sense of safety and security or perception of safety and security."
While Grace says if she ever saw anything, she wouldn't be afraid to go to the police with information, Leanna says she would stay quiet.
Even with the anonymity of Crimestoppers, Leanna fears that if a criminal knew she had seen what happened, if they were busted, someone might come after her.
McLane says police have a number of ways to keep witnesses safe, including the witness protection program.
"We can access that program for people that come forward and supply information. That program would ensure their safety."
(With files from Dave Bradley)