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Rochester police say spike in killings not a trend (copy)

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ROCHESTER, Minn. — Rochester is reeling from three homicides in the span of one week, with a double stabbing over the weekend.

The stabbings came days after an Iraqi refugee was shot in northwest Rochester, and two months after a teenager was shot after a traffic accident.

The city’s 2018 homicide count has reached four in less than three months.

Police spokesperson Captain John Sherwin said he doesn’t believe the violence represents a trend. None of the four killings were related to gang violence or to drugs.

“These are not drug dealers,” he said. “These are not people who are involved in that high risk lifestyle.”

So far, Sherwin said, each killing has been a random encounter that wound up fatal.

“I know the numbers are up this year for us. But we generally have one or two homicides a year in Rochester and for a city of our size, that’s well below the national average,” he said.

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