Statement from Majority Leader Jo-Ann Ryan Regarding Yesterday’s Shootings on Smith Street

Aug 26, 2020 | 0 comments

Late yesterday afternoon and then again later last night, two separate shooting incidents took place on Smith Street. The first took place at the intersection of Smith and River, where it is believed that two cars were chasing each other, and shots were fired. Neither of the vehicles in question was hit. Unfortunately, an uninvolved vehicle was hit by a stray bullet, and thankfully there were no injuries. Thanks to the fine men and women of the Providence Police Department, one of the alleged suspects were apprehended shortly after the incident in the near vicinity.

Then at approximately 11:30 PM last night, two males ages 16 and 20 were shot near the 400 block of Smith Street, and they sustained non-life-threatening injuries. No arrests have been made at this time, and the Police are still investigating.

Our City is facing what seems to be an unprecedented amount of violent crime in the past few weeks. We must work together with our community partners, public safety officials, and elected officials to restore order and peace on our streets.

I am once again committing to advocate for sensible, enforceable, and meaningful gun legislation with our state and federal representatives that would remove guns from those that would use them to do harm, rather than for sport or self-protection.

When these incidents happen in our neighborhoods, witnesses and other concerned neighbors are often not updated on outcomes, and it perpetuates a feeling of considerable uncertainty and fear for those who live in the affected areas.

I plan to introduce a resolution calling on the City’s Public Safety Department to institute a City-wide gun-buy-back program in the hopes of getting some of these weapons off of our streets in the upcoming City Council legislative session beginning in September.

I have been in contact with our police department leadership, and the incidents yesterday are active investigations. As I learn more, I will share with the community as soon as allowed.

Quality of life for our City’s residents is paramount, and something that I fight for every day as a City Councilor.

If you have any information regarding these incidents, please call the Providence Police Department’s non-emergency number at 401-272-1111 or filing a report online at

Jo-Ann Ryan, Majority Leader
Providence City Council
Councilwoman – Ward 5

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