GREENSBORO, N.C. — Data from the police department shows violent crime goes up in the summer in Greensboro.
Dr. Ayesha Lovick, a trauma surgeon at Cone Health, says she sees a lot more injuries this time of year.
"I think that there is similarly more opportunity to be involved in activities that potentially put you at risk for being involved in a violent crime," Lovick said.
The numbers also show a rise. WFMY News 2 received data from the Greensboro Police Department from the last five years. In each year, there's a rise in crime during June, July and August. Dr. Lovick says she thinks there are several contributing factors.
"The first kind of category, if you will, is mental health. There's more opportunities for recreational activities and groups when you couple decreased coping skills and increased triggers, we have increased opportunities for conflict," Lovick said.
She says another factor is economic disadvantage. It has a bigger impact when kids are not in school and aren't occupied throughout the day. She also says kids growing up in lower-income families have a harder time finding a summer job.
"School is a place of refuge for them and without those opportunities to have that, they're put in positions where they're at increased risk of being victims of gun violence," Lovick said.
When the summer months roll around, Lovick says the staff prepares for the influx of patients and it can be stressful.
"It can be overwhelming in the moment, for sure, in terms of the volume of patients that come through, often times when there's an episode of violent crime, especially with gun violence, there are multiple victims that come in either at the same time or around the same time together," Lovick said.
Dr. Lovick says Cone Health has a program called Cone Core that seeks to decrease gun violence in the city. It targets teenagers between 14 and 17, pairing them with a mentor who can help them find a summer job or activity.