Kansas City police urging safe driving as deadly crashes happen at record-breaking pace

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas City police say they’re not only investigating homicides at a record-breaking pace, but also deadly crashes.

The Kansas City Police Department reports 80 deadly crashes around the city compared to 53 at this time last year. In all of 2019, there were 78 fatalities, according to KCPD data.

Two people were killed in separate crashes Thursday afternoon.

“I have never seen a spike like this before,” said the KCPD Supervisor for Accident Investigations Sgt. Bill Mahoney. “We have really stepped up our efforts and enforcement both in impaired driving and speed, and to be honest not having an effect.”

Police are urging for safe driving after a staggering number of traffic deaths, car crashes, and deadly hit and runs across the city.

Mahoney said most of the traffic-related crashes are the cause of impairment or speeding.

‘We know there is a lot of impairment going on, we know there is a lot of high speeds going on,” Mahoney said. “It’s everybody’s problem. Even if you are not the person driving recklessly, just because someone else is out driving that way, it’s your problem.”

One of the latest victims, 26-year old Quentrel Griffin. He died while leaving Percy’s Bar & D’s Kitchen on Oldham Road, September 18. Griffin was crossing the street, the driver of a car never stopped.

“We are one of the only businesses right here in the middle of the [Swope] park. Daily, we see cars race up and down the street,” said the owner of Percy’s, Dwanda Smith.

Percy’s has been a staple in the Swope Park area for generations. Smith says her family acquired the business in March of 2016. Her next goal is to help make the area safer to travel.

“I would like to see done for the safety of us here, and our customers, I would like to put some speed bumps and slow down signs,” Smith said.

Smith said Griffin was a frequent customer. She is giving-back to his family through customer donations to show support.

The driver involved in this deadly crash is unknown. If you have information, contact KCPD or call the TIPS Hotline anonymously at 816-474-8477.

Police are also reminding people to drive defensively and watch for any kind of impaired driving.

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