Groups talk about crime problems in Memphis, and how to reach youth

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- A little late night basketball at the Lester Community Center kept kids off the streets and having fun. They were shooting hoops while two groups of people tried to figure out how to keep them on the straight and narrow.

"As an African-American male, it's easy to reach out to other African-American males,"Jonathan Mosley, a student at Christian Brothers University, said.

At CBU, students invited reps from juvenile justice organizations to give them some insight on how they can help reach young people.

Student Gabrielle Pilgrim knows it takes more than being a big sister or having midnight basketball, and now she has more of an idea of what to build upon.

"We need to realize they are human beings with minds that can be molded," Pilgram said.

"We rely so much on this age group, 20-plus group, to reach back," Shelby County Mayor Mark Luttrell added.

Luttrell and Memphis Police Director Toney Armstrong said the student input was challenging, and forced them to raise the bar.

"They have a lot to say, not all of it is negative. They have great ideas," Armstrong said.

It wasn't just kids but also parents at Lester Community Center who said the problem is bigger than basketball, because it's related to jobs and the economy, and they're fed up.

3 comments

  • Rude Druid

    Groups TALK.

    Feral youths continue to BEAT AND PLUNDER.

    NOTHING constructive is happening with this vicious, hateful violence.

    Mayor Wharton has failed to control King Willie’s chirren.

  • Puff

    Well if you can just reach one maybe it will get contagious and spread, show them that you can just say no to violence and crime.

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