FAYETTEVILLE, WV (WVNS) – A sudden increase in violent crimes in Fayette County has some residents concerned.
A shooting on Friday, November 19, 2022, sent one individual to the hospital, and just three days later on Monday, November 21, 2022, Sheriff’s Deputies responded to a separate shooting that left one person dead.
Corporal Michael Sifers with the Fayette County Sheriff’s Department said the two incidents are in no way connected, and the sudden spike in violent crimes is just a coincidence.
However, he also said they usually do see a rise in domestic disputes around this time of year.
“Statistically our crime stays pretty average. But there is, I wouldn’t call it a major uptick, but there is a recognizable increase in more domestic crimes, family crime, more cabin-fever related,” Sifers told 59News. “Everybody is inside, it’s cold, they can’t get out as much.”
On November 10, 2022, there was also an officer-involved shooting in Fayette County when U.S. Marshals fired on an individual suspected of bringing drugs into West Virginia from out of state.
Cpl. Sifers added an increase in drug activity is not directly responsible for an increase in violent crimes in the county, but it can be a contributing factor in some cases.
“They hold hands,” Sifers explained. “I mean if there’s one crime element, there’s often another. So, correlation possibly. Causation, I wouldn’t say so.”
Sifers reiterated that two shootings in four days is simply an unfortunate coincidence, and Fayette County residents have no need to worry.
The Fayette County Sheriff’s Department says investigations are currently ongoing for both shootings.