Lexington's Mayor and sheriff, some pastors, and community activists gathered in Duncan Park Thursday to call for "peace walks" to put an end to recent violence in the city.
Fatal shootings involving young people area causing increased concerns about gun-related violence. Council Member Chris Ford says police are reaching out to community members. "They're trying to build a bond with our community and I'm gonna ask our community to, in turn, work with our police department, work with our church leaders, work with our community organizations," said Ford
The first of four "peace walks" begins Saturday at 6:00 pm at the park at the corner of Limestone and Fifth Street. Anita Franklin, whose son Antonio was fatally shot in the inner city's Duncan Park last April, says she considers violence a disease, “That's what it is. It is overtaking our community and our children are afraid.” “They're in the middle between being loyal to friends and knowing what's right and what's wrong," said Franklin.
Franklin says the violence impacts all races in Lexington. She says there are children of all colors being murdered and the community needs to "come together and watch our children."
Reverend Howard Jackson says part of the answer is providing information to investigators. She encourages fellow citizens to work together and to cooperate with law enforcement, saying, “Tell, if you know something.”
Mayor Jim Gray said he considers the theme of the walk "We care" inspiring and not a cliche. He says the slogan demonstrates that community is about humanity and working together to address issues and challenges.