LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - It's been one year since one of the deadliest days on record in the city of Louisville. In the last year, we've seen a crime task force and a new violent crime prevention unit for Louisville Metro Police, but have the people in the areas of town with the highest level of crime seen any change in their neighborhoods? The answer is mixed.
When you drive through 32nd Street and Greenwood Avenue you can see some signs of a change. A new store and restaurant sits directly across from the spot where Makeba Lee, Craig Bland Junior and Tyson Mimms died on May 17, 2012.
Owner Michael Walker hopes the business will make a difference, "If the people have something in the area they've got something to look forward to, maybe the attitudes will change a little bit. Let them know there is some hope."
Hope appeared lost on this street corner one year ago. For Aja Nkrumah, it still is. "I've got to put my life together in some kind of way. I've been just moving since she died."
Nkrumah's daughter, Lee, was the last to die on that May day. It was 1:30 in the afternoon when police arrived to 32nd Street and Greenwood Avenue where they found Bland and Mimms already dead and two more shot. While collecting evidence, with dozens of people standing around police said the girlfriend of Bland, Cheetara Goldsmith, shot and killed Lee, the mother of Mimm's son. Police then shot and injured Goldsmith.
"I just wish things was different," said Nkrumah who grew up in the Parkland neighborhood. "The community wasn't like this at first."
She said despite the outcry after her daughter's murder, what's been done to make changes to the violence on her streets hasn't worked. "The gun laws need to change. People need to do 85 percent of the time when it comes to a gun charge. They need to do 85 percent of their time."
The number of murders between January and May 2013 compared to the same time period last year seem to agree they are nearly the same. There's been 15 this year. There were 16 by May 17 in 2013.
"The violence needs to stop it's just absolutely ridiculous." Walker hopes offering a place and an example will help, "The violence needs to stop it's just absolutely ridiculous." Because he said his neighbors are still walking around these streets living in fear. But even if that can change, for Nkrumah, "That's not going to bring me my daughter back. That's not going to make my Christmas better or my holidays."
There has been no arrest in the deaths of Bland or Mimms. Police Chief Steve Conrad said they are still looking for who's responsible and they need the community's they need them to tell police what they know in order to make that happen.
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