A lack of “significant” information from witnesses following a spate of fatal shootings involving young children has prompted police to offer a reward of up to $100,000 (£81,600).
At least 12 children have reportedly been killed in St Louis since April, with officials offering rewards for information relating to four unsolved cases.
The latest unsolved case involves eight-year-old Jurnee Thompson, who was killed on Friday night while sitting outside a restaurant with her family.
Lyda Krewson, mayor of St Louis, said rewards would be given to those with information leading to arrests after the four children were shot dead in separate incidents.
Police are offering $25,000 (£20,400) rewards for each of the four unsolved cases
Speaking at a news conference, Ms Krewson said she hoped the time-limited reward – offered until 1 September by private donors – would encourage people to come forward and “expresses the urgency of this situation”.
Rewards are also being offered in the cases of Kayden Johnson, two; Kennedi Powell, three, and Eddie Hill, 10.
The three children were killed between April and July. Kayden was killed with his mother while they hid from intruders, and Eddie and Kennedi were shot outside their homes, police said.
Officials have expressed frustration at the lack of co-operation in several cases, with potential witnesses scared of retaliation from gangs and drug dealers.
St Louis’ director of public safety Jimmie Edwards told reporters he knew there were “many” murders within the city without an arrest and that “our hearts go out to all the victims’ families”, but said the city did not have the money to offer rewards in all of those cases.
Source: SKY NEWS