Sen. Jamilah Nasheed, D-St. Louis

State Sen. Jamilah Nasheed, D-St. Louis, wants Gov. Mike Parson to declare a state of emergency in response to the homicide rate in the city she represents. In a letter to the governor on Monday, Nasheed calls the murder figure an “unyielding and deadly public health threat”.

She asks for the declaration to free up resources from the Missouri Departments of Public Safety, Health and Senior Services and Mental Health. Nasheed wants the assistance to cover services to schools for care by trauma professionals and diversion programs for youth. She goes on to say the declaration would give police the extra tools to fight crime.

“If we can spend billions of dollars to fight the Taliban half a world away, surely we can put a fraction of those dollars to work here at home combatting drug dealers and gangs on the streets of St. Louis,” Nasheed says.

Her letter cites 79 homicides in the St. Louis area so far this year, including Monday’s fatal shooting outside of a downtown Pizzaria.