Community members, Philly recording artist Beanie Sigel calls to end gun violence

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Saturday, August 15, 2020
Community members, Philly recording artist Beanie Sigel calls to end gun violence
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Community activists came out and hit the streets Saturday to try and find a pulse or root cause of some of the unrest leading to so much violence.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- It was another violent night in Philadelphia Friday, with nearly a dozen shootings overnight.

Saturday, community activists came out and hit the streets to try and find a pulse or root cause of some of the unrest leading to so much violence.

At 59th and Master Street in West Philadelphia, the community gathered in outrage, by the number of violence incidents that unfolded Friday night.

RELATED: State representative, councilmembers, police inspector gathered in West Philadelphia to discuss gun violence

Among the crowd, City of Dreams Coalition officials and Philadelphia recording Artist Beanie Sigel were also in attendance.

The group went door to door talking with members of the community about the violence and encouraging others to speak up about what they may know involving any of the crimes.

The goal here is to advocate for programs that are available in the community, to try and encourage the younger crowd to avoid the streets and potentially a life of crime.

Some of Saturday night crimes included: the fatal shooting of a 17-year-old man on the 2200 block of West Harold Street.

The victim shot in the chest, and rushed to Temple University Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Saturday morning two women were shot in North Philadelphia on the 800 block of West Sedgley Avenue.

To combat the senseless gun violence Philadelphia Police, city council, and community groups organized a home gun check, urging residents to safely dispose firearms that they have in their homes, before they get into the wrong hands.

"Enough is enough," said Council member Kenyatta Johnson, who was at one of the locations today, in Point Breeze.

Andre Rivers had a couple of guns in his home he wasn't using so he turned them in. He said there were no questions asked, and he said he was in and out of the building in less than a minute.

"I didn't want them laying around the house," said Rivers, adding "The process is fine, you just give it to them, the police thanked you, the staff here thanked you, and that was it.

Rivers returned the guns at the Germantown location. "I didn't have to sign or do anything, I just had to turn them in, it don't get no easier than that," said Rivers.

Guns and ammunition could be turned in at two locations, at churches in Germantown and Point Breeze. Both are areas that have experienced recent gun violence.

"Every gun off the street is a gun that could potentially end up, and be involved in a shooting," said Bilal Qayyum, president of Father's Day rally committee, which helped organize the day's firearm disposal.

In total 43 guns were turned in, which is a step in the right direction to help save lives, especially children's, whose lives have been innocently caught in the crossfire of shootouts.

"Right now we're facing an emergency here in the city of Philadelphia when it comes to gun violence, we've seen children being shot and murdered, we've seen pregnant women being shot and murdered," said Johnson.

City council, along with the police department and community groups, plans to do at least two more of these gun give backs before the summer is over.

Back on Master Street, activists tried to get the word out that enough is enough.

"What we're trying to do is build more recreation centers and more studios to give these young children more things to do and direction," said Sigel. "You heard from our block captain that she was asking for help, how is a block captain scared to come out of her own house. That doesn't make any sense."