Milwaukee Health Dept.

Milwaukee Health Commissioner Bevan Baker says the city needs to address its violent crime as a public health threat.

Baker was among the leaders who testified Thursday before Common Council's Public Safety Committee. Its chairman convened the meeting in response to the surge in the city's homicide rate. The count of those killed already matches that for all of 2014, and quite a few of the victims have been children.

The Milwaukee Health Department has applied more than 2,200 doses of mosquito larvicide to catch basins across the city, to help prevent West Nile virus.