COLUMBUS, Ohio (WSYX) — The rising homicide numbers in Columbus are garnering attention in Washington, D.C. US Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) said what is happening in Columbus mirrors crime numbers around the country, and he blames the pandemic and what it has done to the economy, mental health, and the fight against opioid addiction.

“Frankly, government has failed to address mental health issues,” he said during an exclusive interview with ABC 6. “Much of government forgot about (opioids) during the pandemic, and it's gotten worse.”

Brown said plans announced today by City of Columbus leaders to distribute gun locks and to consider a gun buy-back are good ideas. But he criticized state lawmakers for not doing more about illegal guns and keeping guns out of the hands of those who shouldn’t have them.

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