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WHAT WOULD YOU DO? Tallahassee leaders seeking solutions for gun violence

There have been 15 homicides so far this year, according to TPD.
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Posted at 5:14 PM, Aug 24, 2023
and last updated 2023-08-24 17:19:18-04
  • Video shows community members reaction to the recent rise in violence and how they think Tallahassee can be safer.
  • There have been 15 homicides so far this year, according to TPD. 13 of them are from gun violence.
  • The CRA is looking to set aside $1M for community policing efforts.

BROADCAST TRANSCRIPT:

With the recent rise in crime in Tallahassee, community members are wondering when the violence will stop!

"We're all hurting," said Talethia Edweards. "We're all searching for answers. We're all searching for solutions of how do we deal with this?"

City leaders are asking for your help in reducing gun violence in our community. I asked people what they want to see done to make Tallahassee safer.

"It's heartbreaking as a community leader to have these things happen so often," said Edwards.

Community leader Talethia Edwards said she's tired of seeing the amount of gun violence happening in the Capitol City.

I checked with the Tallahassee Police Department. As of Wednesday, there have been 15 homicides so far this year and 13 of them were a result of gun violence.

Edwards isn't the only one with concerns.

"I think it's out of control, you know going to the gym is scary going anywhere actually is scary," said Constance Taylor.

"I try to stay away from there because you hear about killings and stabbings and bad things happening over that way," said Robert White.

Long time South Tallahassee residents Constance Taylor and Robert White say something has to change.

One tactic people have tried are prayer vigils and panel discussions but Edwards said that's not enough.

"Everybody's doing their job and trying to come up with ways but this problem and this solution is outside of what we've been doing and we need to figure that out," said Edwards.

Now, Tallahassee's Community Redevelopment Agency is looking for solutions.

"We are trying to make sure that we are at the table and seeing how we can help," said Cox.

Director of the CRA Stephen Cox is working to increase public safety by starting a collaboration with the Tallahassee Police Department. They're talking about setting side $1 million over the next five years for community policing strategies.

"It's going to come down to what the community is identifying as the most glaring needs and then seeing where TPD falls in and where we may be able to assist with some of that," said Cox.

Although Edwards said part of the solution to gun violence involves more resources in the community, she thinks it'll also take: "Innovation, right? We need some collaborative innovation to figure out some witty ways to deal with this gun violence and to essentially reach the youth."

As for Taylor and White, they say:

"Safety awareness, more you know crime watch and stuff."

"Community relations I think are really important," said White. "Police come out and talk to the private citizens or vise versa so yeah for sure I would support that."

With those ideas in mind, Edwards said we're moving in the right direction.

"All is not lost. I'm not giving up," said Edwards. "I'm never going to give up hope or faith that there are ways and things we can actually do."

Cox tells me if the money is approved, it'll be incorporated in their budget for the year. Once TPD develops a community policing strategy based on the feedback they receive, they have the funding to get the program started.