Experts: Ending gun violence takes much more than making arrests

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Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters is at war. Neither he nor his assistant prosecutors plan to offer plea deals to people accused of gun crimes in the wake of the July 4 shooting that killed 16-year-old Milo Watson and 19-year-old Dexter Wright in the middle of a crowded Smale Park. Mayor John Cranley is, too. The city of Cincinnati is partnering with the Department of Justice in a new effort to bring federal charges against people who illegally possess firearms. But community leaders and criminal justice experts said it doesn’t help to block off only one end of a pipeline. If politicians and police want a less violent city, their drive to charge and jail offenders should move in lockstep with efforts to scrub out the conditions that create crime: Poverty, desperation and inequality.

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