Neighbors discussing new ways to fight Richmond violence - NBC12 - Richmond, VA News

Neighbors discussing new ways to fight Richmond violence

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RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) -

The recent up tick in violence finds Richmond neighbors organizing to take back their communities. They organized a community conversation at St. Paul's Baptist Church on Belt Blvd. to discuss ways they can take action. The church is located just minutes away from the scene of Sunday's homicide. Now people all across the city are uniting since the Southside isn't the only area being impacted.

Living on the East End just isn't what it once was for 68 year old Halim Muhammed.

"You hear this regular, gunshots anytime of night," he said.

In fact - he heard them just days ago when gunfire hit a victim on the 2000 block of Fairfield Avenue. Since then, there have been at least 4 more shootings in the city of Richmond. Four men are dead.

"I think it's a horrible plight that needs to be corrected really," Muhammed added.

That's the focus of a community meeting at St. Paul's Baptist Church.

"Never of this magnitude have folks really been concerned," said James JJ Minor.

So the community activist is getting involved - organizing neighbors from all sections of the city to learn the different factors that contribute to violence.

"There are different things going on in our community such as conflict resolution, turf wars, you have drugs in our community. You also have a high concentration of poverty," Minor said.

He believes identifying the root of the problem and then tackling those issues can help create safer communities.

"We're seeing too many back to back and we need to put something in place in order to fix this problem…We're all coming together to see what we can do as a community to just take it back and that's what we're going to have to do and if it means taking it to the streets, then that's what we'll do," Minor added.

It's an idea Muhammad embraces. He's been the victim of multiple thefts since he's lived here - but he's determined not to let criminals run him away.

Richmond officers are planning to unveil this week new details into a state partnership to help get illegal weapons off of the streets. With assistance from the state , Richmond's Fugitive and Firearms Imitative group was able to recover more than 140 illegal weapons last year.

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