What happened to Hazleton?
A shooting in Hazleton Pa sparked outrage and protest from the family and friends of the victim.
To summarize the story the shooting happened on October 5th around 2 am in the city when the police were investigating a large fight. The police were told a man was running with a handgun and began to pursue him. They chased the man Jonathan Garay to his residence and a struggled began when the gun dropped. The suspect dove for the gun and supposedly pointed it at police when they fatally shot him. The man dies from his wounds at the local hospital.
The family of the suspect claims that the story of the police was falsified and that he was an innocent man shot by police without just cause. The state police in Pennsylvania are investigating this shooting.
Yesterday, Friday October 12, family and friends assembled and protested the shooting that happened in the city days ago. More than 100 people marched from the home of the shooting to City hall demanding the district attorney to investigate and bring the officer to justice for murder charges. The sister of the victim claims the story by police is wrong and that there will be no peace until the officer is arrested. The state polices had many officers on horseback watching over the protest and keeping the calm. Other news reports interviewed family and friends of the victim and many want justice and plan to protest many more times.
I have sympathy for the family of the victim, and hope things work out for the best. The only issues is that when there is a shooting by police, in any city the first things the victim’s family claim is the police were profiling and targeting minorities, in this case Latinos. But in cities like Hazleton there is a large amount of crimes and suspected drug dealing and gang violence by the Latino community. Crimes violent and non violent steadily have ben rising since 1995. Many are the result of gang violence and drug activity.
Everyone has their opinions about crimes and shootings like what happened in Hazleton, but it is hard to understand the depth of crime in Hazleton without growing up and living in this small city. Watching your city where crime was low and people were more trusting of each other go to a city where violent crimes are rapidly rising, many hates crimes against whites by Latinos are committed and walking down the street, even in the daytime has become risky. Outsiders will not understand the change that has Happened to Hazleton over the years. I have falling into their “bad” crowd during my adult years but learned from my mistakes and moved on. I moved from Hazleton in 2009 and have not been back there since. I have family still living in Hazleton and worry about them. Unfortunately my family was the victim of a home invasion in January 2012 and other people I have known have been victims of crimes since I have left.
I still keep up on the news of Hazleton since I have ties there. Many may call me racist for my writing here but I write just the truth about the decline of this city. When a resident of Hazleton who grew up there before the turn of this century can no longer walk the streets, sit on their porch, or drive their car then there is a problem. When lifelong residents are moving from the city because of fear for them and their children then there is an issue. Many people I know still live there and refuse to let the criminals scare them off.
Hazleton’s financial resources have been drained dealing with the rises of population, rising crime, demand for social help by the new residents, and drain on their resources. and this does not stop at Hazleton alone. Other communities immediately surrounding Hazleton are struggling with the same issues as well as the local school district.
What was once a great place to live is no more and may never return. All anyone can do is make the best of it and live on. Community leaders of all races need to join and work on ways to unite the population, not divide it by racism and crimes. Having more Latino’s on city council, in community programs and services such as fire and especially the police department can help bridge the gap among races in Hazleton. Everyone needs a place to live and no one person of any race is better than the other. But first working together to make this a community again is the first step in a long process.
Pertaining to the shooting mentioned earlier this could have been adverted first. I am not an investigator and have no idea what really happened that night. But I can suggest a fast solution to this new issue facing Hazleton or more racial tension will start happening.
- Family Speaks Out About Deadly Shooting in Hazleton (wnep.com)
- Man shot dead in Hazleton (timesleader.com)
- Family Believes Police Shooting Was Not Justified (wnep.com)