Sharpton wants crime summit with NYPD Commissioner Kelly

July 15, 2012 6:24:53 AM PDT
The Rev. Al Sharpton is calling for a meeting with New York City police commissioner Ray Kelly, to discuss the city's recent increase in violent crime.

Sharpton is challenging Kelly's assertion earlier this week that community leaders aren't focusing enough on the problem.

Nearly 80 people have been shot over the past week, and children have been caught in the crossfire, including a 14-year old girl and a 3-year old boy.

Sharpton urged city and community leaders Saturday to sit down at the table.

"It is easy for everybody to go in their corner and come out and swing," said Sharpton. "What is difficult and shows real leadership is to go beyond your comfort zone for the good of the people".

Those comments were aimed at Kelly, who had accused community leaders of being silent during the summer crime spree.

"I think the political leadership, some of it, are very willing to attack the police department and not willing to take on the big issue, which is crime happening in their own neighborhoods," said Kelly.

Sharpton says they need to address what he believes are two separate issues: civil rights and gun violence.

"There clearly is a need for a new collective strategy," he said. "If stop and frisk was working we wouldn't have had the shootings, so y'all are not getting the guns."

WAKE UP WITH EYEWITNESS NEWS! Click here to download the WABC Eyewitness News Alarm Clock app from iTunes. or search WABC or 7online in the app store.

Get Eyewitness News Delivered

Facebook | Twitter | Newsletters | Text Alerts