Westwood murders: Residents concerned about their safety

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Local residents are reeling, worried about four murders that happened over the last two months. Those who live in the Westwood community are talking about the incidents that occurred between November and January.

“It’s crazy. It sounds like something out of a movie,” said Westwood resident Reko Gates.

Kristopher Johnson, who’s also a resident in this Southwest Memphis community said he heard about the investigations and is convinced that they are not random.

“Rumor has it or as fact has it, that they were shot in the head and then burned,” said Johnson. “If two people get killed the same way in the same area, they screaming serial killer, let alone four. It’s not a coincidence.”

FOX13 did our own digging. We found six murders happened between November 8th and January 5th in Westwood.

According to Memphis Police, back on November 8th there was a murder at 500 Levi Road. On December 9th, a murder at Cimmaron and Star Line Drive, on December 20th another murder in the 1-thousand block of Leacrest Avenue, then another the following day on the 21st in the 18-hundred block of West Raines.

The crimes are even catching the attention of Westwood religious leaders.

“Quite upset with this thing constantly happening, and in some way the community has been numbed to this murder culture. There’s a murder spirit that just runs rampant,” said Mount Vernon Baptist Church Senior Pastor, Reverend Melvin Watkins.

Westwood opened up the new year with a murder reported on January 3rd in the 36-hundred block of Silas and then on January 5th at Weaver and West Mitchell Road. In response, MPD said it’s too premature to consider whether all these incidents are connected.

“That’s four, to me that’s not coincidental,” Gates said.

“I mean I can understand them not wanting to label it as a serial killer,” said Johnson, “but when the shoe fit, you got to wear it.”