PHILADELPHIA — Mayor Jim Kenney and Parks & Recreation Commissioner Kathryn Ott Lovell tonight issued the following statements on the death of Philadelphia Parks & Rec employee Tiffany Fletcher.
“Our hearts are incredibly heavy tonight. In a brazen and unconscionable act of gun violence, Tiffany Fletcher—a dedicated, passionate, and driven City employee—was struck by crossfire in the middle of the day doing a job she loved at Mill Creek Playground in West Philadelphia.
“Words alone cannot express the outrage, hurt, and sadness all of her colleagues feel tonight. I was beyond appalled to learn of this heinous and senseless crime that has completely devastated so many people, especially her family.
“Today, like every day, Tiffany went to work at Mill Creek Playground to serve the community and people she loved, and serve as a role model for her children. Now, a family is left grief stricken, colleagues are in mourning, and a community is left to cope with this unimaginable loss. I share my deepest condolences with those who knew and loved Tiffany. To all of our City colleagues hurting tonight, please know that supports are available.
“Violence anywhere in Philadelphia will always be unacceptable, and the Police Department is investigating this incident to ensure the people who are responsible are brought to justice. Thankfully, because of the quick response from our officers and support from the community, PPD was able to arrest one suspect who remains in custody.
“Unfortunately, we have seen this tragedy play out in our neighborhoods repeatedly, near places like rec centers that should be safe and sacrosanct so children can learn, grow, and play. That’s one of the reasons the City now offers a $10,000 reward for any information leading to the arrest and conviction of someone who fires a weapon within 500 feet of a school, rec center, or library. We hope those with information about this horrific crime will come forward so we can get the perpetrators off the streets.
“As our administration, in partnership with all of our local and federal law enforcement agencies, continues to work relentlessly to reduce violence and create safer communities, we need the public’s help and encourage any resident with information about this heinous act of violence, or any others, to report it anonymously to 215-686-TIPS.”
Commissioner Ott Lovell:
“Rec centers should be safe havens in our city. The use of deadly weapons in and around our parks and playgrounds is unconscionable.
“This afternoon a cherished member of the Philadelphia Parks & Recreation team was caught in crossfire and killed while serving her community at work at the Mill Creek Playground. Our colleague came to work each day dedicated to serving her neighbors and making her family proud. We thank the dedicated Parks & Rec team members, emergency, and medical staff who responded to this incident.
“Each day thousands of Parks & Recreation professionals make joy happen, bringing our public spaces to life for Philadelphia families, and providing fun and mentorship for the young people they serve.
“We will continue to work closely with police to monitor site safety while providing welcoming, supportive places where youth can grow and thrive.
“We are grateful that the City of Philadelphia is offering a $10,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the perpetrators of this senseless violence, and any other member of the public who fires a gun causing injuries to others within 500 feet of a school, recreation center, or library in Philadelphia.”