MEMPHIS, Tenn. — It was standing room only during a town hall meeting where the topic of conversation focused on what it will take to crack down on gun violence and crime overall.
Taking part was the city’s police chief who has been the victim of crime twice in less than a year. With more than 60 homicides this year, some might argue that these are difficult times, ushering in difficult conversations.
Saturday, Senator London Lamar created seats at the table for community activist DeAndre Brown, Reverend Reginald Boyce and Chief CJ Davis.
“We need to come together to have meaningful conversations around solutions,” Lamar said.
Shelby County’s Office of Reentry’s Brown said the community should target children in its change.
“We have not done the due diligence in teaching our children on how to be good citizens,” Brown said.
Reverend Boyce of Riverside Mississippi Baptist Church also thought children should be in the mix during the change.
“I’d rather have my children hate me for doing the right thing, for correcting behavior,” he said.
Chief Davis went into detail about gun violence saying that most of it comes from people who know each other.
“A lot of what you’re saying is not random gunfire,” she said. “It’s not just random violence. These are individuals that know each other.”
In the 10 months Chief Davis has called Bluff City home, she has been victimized twice. The most recent was a break-in at her newly built home. When asked about the crime, she pointed the issue towards crime knowing no boundaries.
“I don’t want to personalize crime here because everybody in this room has been a victim of some type of infringement,” Chief Davis said.
There is hope that events like this will build bridges between cops and the community. This was something seen following the deadly shooting of rapper Young Dolph.
“It was thousands of leads,” Chief Davis said. “The person shouldn’t have to be a celebrity or a person of status for the community to mobilize.”
There is also a fear factor when it comes to those willing to come forward with information following a crime.
WREG asked Chief Davis about what could be done to change the fear factor narrative, and she reassured tipsters that they will remain anonymous.