As 8 people shot in 24 hours, health director pleads for action on gun violence

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — At least eight people were shot in the city of Memphis in the last 24 hours, and the director of the county’s health department is sharing a message on the violence.

There have been 271 homicides in Memphis this year, as of Friday, and Memphis Police say 240 of those people were murdered. Those statistics shatter previous records.

Of those eight people shot in the past 24 hours, three died.

Detectives also investigated a shots fired call late Thursday night on 1-240 at Millbranch. No one was hurt. 

As Shelby County works to get a handle on the COVID-19 virus, there’s another illness plaguing our community — gun violence.

WREG has talked to Shelby County Health Department Director Dr. Alisa Haushalter extensively about this issue.

She calls gun violence a public health crisis. This week she highlighted the issue again. 

“I want to remind our health community that we have many health issues that impact Shelby County and gun violence is one of those,” she said.

Haushalter’s message comes hours before community leaders plan a Unity Walk Against Gun Violence. The health department one of the 16 sponsors of the event.

“Trust that, as much effort that we put into COVID, if we put that effort into gun violence, we could make a difference for our community,” Haushalter said.

The two-mile walk starts at 10 a.m. Saturday at the Shelby County Juvenile Court. Social distancing and COVID protocols will be put in place.

Related: March against violence planned as Memphis faces record year for homicides

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