8 shootings in 6 weeks prompts Hamilton police to launch task force

Hamilton police have created a task force to combat gun violence and drug trafficking after a recent surge in shootings in the city.

So far in 2019 there have been eight shootings in Hamilton, including a deadly incident on the mountain that claimed the life of Cece Luppino. Luppino, 43, was gunned down at a home owned by his father, Rocco on Jan. 30. The Luppino’s are a well-known organized crime family in the city, however police say Cece had no criminal record.

Investigators say the majority of the incidents have been targeted but a recent shooting on the central mountain on Feb. 10 was not.

Police were called to a home near Stone Church Rd. East and Upper Wellington Rd. after a couple woke up to find gunshot holes in the side of their house.

Investigators say no one was injured and police are still trying to determine a motive in the random shooting.

“This recent trend is not acceptable – one shooting is too many for our community,” said Hamilton Police Superintendent Ryan Diodati in a news release. “We are developing persons of interest but we know there are individuals out there who have information. It’s important that if you see something, you say something.”

Hamilton police say during the same period last year, Hamilton only experienced three shootings and saw a decline in the overall number of shootings in 2018.

Here is a look at the shootings in Hamilton so far this year:

Police say generally victims and witnesses have not been cooperating with police. Investigators are appealing to anyone with information to come forward or call Crime Stoppers to speak anonymously.

The rise in incidents has prompted police to increase patrols, and execute search warrants throughout the city.

“We can’t do this alone. There are people out there with information and we encourage them to come forward to hold those responsible accountable,” said Diodati. “We need to continue working together to make sure Hamilton is a safe place for everyone.”

In 2018, the city saw a decline in the overall number of shooting incidents.