Elmira Crime Spurt

Elmira Crime Spurt

Elmira (WENY) -- This morning's attempted robbery at an Express Mart and a hatchet attack on a trespasser on Fulton Street contribute to a week full of an unusually high number of crimes. The week started with a man getting shot in the head at Hathorn Court. Then Wednesday night, shots were fired on Walnut Street. And this morning, an Elmira man greeted a suspect at his door with a hatchet, and someone else tried to rob a convenience store.

Captain Joe Kain of Elmira Police Department said none of these crimes are related, and sometimes, communities just experience random highs and lows. But overall, Kain said people shouldn't be too worried.

"Right now, the Elmira Police Department is experiencing one of those upswings of crimes," said Kain. "There's no rhyme or reason behind it, it's just something that happens."

At 1:30 a.m. today, 30-year-old Marquise Merrill wandered -- drunk -- into the wrong house on Fulton street. The homeowner thought someone was breaking in and sliced Merrill's arm and hand with a hatchet. Merrill was arrested and charged with criminal trespassing.

Then just after 3 a.m., someone else tried to rob the Express Mart on Maple Ave. 

People in Elmira today have mixed feelings about the recent crime spurt.

"I worry about the people that I know that live in Elmira," said Carol Barrett, who used to live in Elmira.

"I don't feel scared walking the streets of Elmira," said resident Katlynn Taylor.

"I feel like it's a safe community," added Chuck Dygert.

Police say they take all crime very seriously and ask the community for help, too.

"We're trying to put the extra patrols out there, put an end to these and make arrests out of it," said Kain. "But we also need public assistance in any witnesses coming forward to help us with it."

Kain said detectives are still investigating the shootings from earlier this week, and they're still looking for a witness to this morning's attempted robbery.