Armed violence Laval does not regret it, SPVM wants to invest in social networks

Laval does not spare the rise in crimes against the person and episodes of shootings, according to new data, at a time when Montreal police say they want to invest in social networks, where some “display weapons just for fun.”

Published at 9:00

Vincent Larin

Vincent Larin

Henri Wellett-Vezina

Henri Wellett-Vezina

An annual report by the Laval Police Service (SPL), released on Wednesday, reported a “peak” of this type of crime last year, an increase of 30% over the previous four years.

Police report a significant increase in the number of attacks on its territory last year (2711), which is 20% more than the average from 2015 to 2019, and “acts of threats or violence” – by 27% compared to the same period.

Blame it on COVID-19?

There is also an increase in armed violence on the island of Il Jesus. Earlier this week, the Vilna de Montreal Police Service (SPVM) said in its annual report that the number of events during which firearms were discharged in 2021 in the metropolis had more than doubled compared to last year.

In Laval, these events also increased in 2020 and 2021 compared to 2019. That year, the SPL recorded 18 episodes of firearms, while in 2020 this number rose to 40, and then to 42 last year.

The SPL clarifies that the shootings took place mostly in public places, and mainly in the Chomedei area, the red light district, where several shootings have still taken place in recent weeks.

The president of the Professional Order of Criminologists of Quebec, Jose Rio, is not surprised by this news. “Of course, it’s just bridges, it’s walking, criminals,” she said, recalling that we find the same social factors that contribute to crime in the two border towns.

The expert finds in this trend of increasing crimes against the person the consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic and related health measures. “Isolation of people has created mental health problems,” she said. The emergence of social networks also has something to do with this, she said, as many criminals challenge or seek to promote themselves, especially young people.

Social networks, “hot earth”

It is the SPVM that sends messages to criminal gangs: their online actions will have consequences.

“The hottest thing now is social networks. We will have to invest more in it, be present with the youth, “said its director of communications Ann Shamandi on Wednesday at the end of the meeting of the Public Security Commission.

According to Mme Shamans, “the future [de la criminalité] it’s actually in cyberspace. ” At the same time, the spokesman sent a message to young people who will use social networks to promote criminal activity. “They should not think that because they are behind bars and anonymous, they are safe from justice. We arrest young people who may threaten or think that deploying or displaying weapons just for fun is cool, ”she said.

Be careful, attentive to what you do. And talk to adults before you think that what you’re doing is a good idea to influence or try to get a like.

Anne Chamandi, Director of Communications, SPVM

He urges the population to “take responsibility for their own safety”. “Talk to the police, even if it’s the smallest detail. Join us in restoring security and a sense of security in Montreal. »

Plante wants to “review methods”

On Wednesday morning, Mayor Valerie Plant argued that the fight against organized crime required a revision of the methods of repression.

“These are really groups that have changed, organized crime has changed, and so we need to reconsider our methods, that we need to go deeper,” she Plant Wednesday, calling for reflection on the Montreal Model. “We need to find solutions to this transformation of groups that, among other things, are looking for young people. »

She argues that we must avoid “falling into the trap of finding a single solution.” “Rather, you need to identify a set of tools and elements,” she said, referring to access to greenery, quality jobs, affordable housing and public transportation.