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Police: Gang violence 'red hot' with kids out of school

Police rely on outreach workers to help deal with city's troubling gang problem.
se portland gang shooting

PORTLAND - Portland police are getting help from a group of volunteer outreach workers to help deal with the city s spike in gang violence, as gunfire erupted three times Saturday.

Police resonded to three separate early Saturday gang shootings, which resulted in one man with a head wound. He was identified as 21-year-old ZachNolds. He was expected to recover from his wounds.

More: One hit in 3 gang shootings

More: 'Operation Cool Down'

To try and prevent such violence, over the past two months, a group of volunteers called Connected has patrolled Northeast Portland s Holladay Park on Friday nights.

That's where in April, 14-year-old Shiloh Hampton was shot in broad daylight. Two arrests have been made in the murder.

Details: Hampton murder arrests

Armed with a smile and a handshake, members of the group are trying to keep young people away from gangs.With school now out of session, efforts are even more crucial.

The police bureau is not going to solve this problem. This is really a community issue, said Commander Dave Benson during KGW s Straight Talk.

The Portland Police Bureau has also activated a total of 17 gang officers on patrol through August.

We want to be out here connecting with the community and inviting others to come out and connect with us, said volunteer Sam Sachs.

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