MILWAUKEE (WITI) — It was a particularly violent weekend in Milwaukee — with at least nine shooting incidents on Saturday, May 16th and at least four incidents on Friday. There were two homicides this weekend — one on Friday and one on Saturday. Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn calls this weekend bloody and disturbing. He and other members of the Milwaukee Police Department took part in an evening of prayer Monday, May 18th during the annual "Blue Mass" at the Basilica of St. Josaphat, where they reflected on the weekend violence.
"When you put on the uniform, it`s a moment of silence. You think about your family, friends," Milwaukee Police Officer William Hanney said.
Officer Hanney sat with his daughter on Monday evening at the Basilica of St. Josaphat, reflecting on a long, troubling past few days.
"It would be nice if everyone would unite and calm down," Officer Hanney said.
After a weekend filled with more than a dozen shootings, including two homicides, there is a push to pray not only for peace, but for the men and women sworn to protect us.
"Evil does not like light. We have to shine a light, which means we have to get the get the community involved, police and establish a relationship so that a light is shined," Milwaukee Archbishop Jerome Listecki said.
The annual "Blue Mass" involves blessing the men and women of the Milwaukee Police Department -- both past and present. Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn says several arrests have been made in connection with this weekend's shootings.
"We`re dealing right now with a subset of offenders who seem undeterred by the threat of arrests," Chief Flynn said.
Chief Flynn says a tactical strategic plan for this summer will rely heavily on the use of neighborhood task forces as well as the FBI and ATF. The Milwaukee Police Department will focus on hot spots and chronic offenders in an effort to shine a light on the city's violence.
"You have to just have faith that everything will turn out the way it should," Officer Hanney said.
Chief Flynn says this violent streak we're seeing is sadly reflective of the trends department officials have predicted.