- Associated Press - Monday, June 1, 2015

NEW YORK (AP) - New York City police say shootings are up so far this year and to combat the spike, 330 officers are being pulled from their usual duties for special patrols.

Chief of Department James O’Neill said Monday the NYPD does not take the rise lightly and is focused on stopping the violence.

The department used similar patrols last summer to combat a rise in shootings and other violence predicted during the hotter months. This year, the patrols will start next week, a month earlier than last year.

So far this year, there have been 439 shootings, up from 403 in 2014, according to departmental figures. There were 2,091 shootings for the same period in 1993 when crime was at a high.

Police say almost all of the 135 homicides so far this year were committed with a gun.

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