Yakima police on alert for potential retaliation following double murder

Yakima police on alert for potential retaliation following double murder
YAKIMA, Wash. -- Less than 24 hours after a double murder rocked the community, Yakima Police Athletic League volunteers got ready for National Night Out at Miller Park.

Y-PAL Officer Rich Fowler said Monday's violence won't change this year's event.

"We're full steam ahead," said Fowler. "That was an unfortunate event yesterday. Fortunately, today is a new day. Time to take back the community and that's what this is all about."

Neighbors agree.

"I hope that people get the message," said Jessenia Escamilla. "They see an event like this, they see that maybe there are people out there that do care about what happens in the neighborhood, that do care about what happens to the kids."

Organizers say the focus still needs to be on building a better relationship between police and the public.

Despite that, there's no ignoring the potential impact an attack like this can have on the community as a whole.

With another shooting Monday night, just hours after the double murder, KIMA wanted to know if investigators were anticipating a ripple effect of even more violence.

Action News asked, "Is there concern that the double homicide will lead to retaliation and more gun violence?"

"Maybe not in the typical sense, with gang on gang issues," Yakima Police Lieutenant Michael Merryman said. "We always have a concern when something like this happens, that retaliation or payback is a concern. We will be aware and watching certain locations for that."

For now, a day of games, entertainment and establishing what police call important connections between law enforcement and neighbors.