VIDEO: Chief Blair calls recent shootings "tragic" and "concerning"
Police chief Bill Blair says the recent shooting deaths of three 15-year-old boys are "tragic," and he is "very concerned" about the violence.
Blair reacted to the shootings after a board meeting Tuesday.
"Any time a young person, any young person, in any of our communities, loses their life to violence, it's an individual tragedy but also a tragedy for those communities," Blair says.
He says the shootings remind the city of the urgency of the work done in communities to provide youth with better opportunities.
Blair says there is no single answer to stopping youth violence. But he repeated one message he has for people who witness crimes or activity that could lead to violence.
"If we have, any of us have information about an individual that is at risk or is putting others at risk, then we have to have the courage to step forward," he says.
Blair says there is still work to do be done by the justice system to help make witnesses feel safe enough to come forward.
When asked whether he thinks action has been too slow to reduce youth violence, considering the topic has come up many times, Blair said police have been working hard on the issue for many years.
He listed statistics that show crime has gone down, including the number of shootings, which is down this year more than 50 per cent from a year ago.
At the same time, Blair says, "You can't reassure a community simply through statistical reductions in crime. I think we have been effective, but the job is not yet done."