Hampton officials looking at ways to reduce violence in the city
Hampton, Va. – Two babies were shot in their grandparents’ front yard. Five teens were shot at a carnival back in May and about two weeks ago, a woman was shot in a shopping mall parking lot.
This recent spike in gun violence brought Hampton residents to council chambers Tuesday to find out what city officials are going to do about it.
“I have a 14-year-old and I have a 17-year-old and I’m concerned about their safety,” says one of the residents.
During a special meeting, the city police chief brought a few solutions to the table including increasing patrols and new surveillance technology.
He also suggested working closely with the housing authority as well as probation and parole.
City officials also brought up the idea of hiring teens during the summer months to help clean up the city.
And City Manager Mary Bunting believes something needs to be done now.
That’s why she says they will bring a number of new ordinances up for consideration to the council as early as next month, one of them being a stricter curfew.
As for ending gun violence in the long term, Genie Robinson and others in the community say it’s all about focusing on the youth.
“If they have no involvement with people in their community, we’re failing. I think we can succeed by involving more people with our youth,” says Robinson.