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'Walk Against Violence' takes place in West Palm Beach

Posted at 3:57 PM, Oct 27, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-27 19:51:07-04

There have been 23 homicides in 2017 in West Palm Beach and 21 of those deaths are gun related. If there are more, it means the city is on track to have the deadliest year in recent history.  

Now the police department and community are coming together to face the gun violence.

They marched together in an area where five shootings have recently happened. They handed out fliers to try to get people who live in the area to call in tips anonymously. 

Clergy members, the West Palm Beach Police Department, concerned residents and community leaders all marched. 

"Working together, walking together. It's important," said West Palm Beach Police Chief Sarah Mooney. "It's a community problem and a community solution."

The march started near the intersection of Sapodilla Avenue and Palm Beach Lakes Boulevard, where there are clear-cut signs of recent violence.  There is a memorial to mark the latest deadly shooting.  

"This needs to stop," said Betsy Hayes, who lives nearby. 

Chief Mooney said there have been eight attempted or actual shootings in the past week. 

"We've had a quick wave of back and forth shootings among a couple factions," said Chief Mooney. 

The uptick in recent violence has opened up old wounds for members of the group Mothers Against Murderers. 

"He was shot with an AK-47 seven times. Additional to that, I've lost 15 other families members to gun violence," said Angela Williams, president of the group. 

So they march as a show of force. 

"It's going to take a unified front, not just one or two. It's going to take the whole community. It's going to take moms dads, grandparents, pastors and churches to come forth," said Teresa Johnson, who is with the Northwest Community Consortium. 

"We care. Mamma cares," said Williams.

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