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Baton Rouge residents coming together to stop the violence in community

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BATON ROUGE - Crime in Baton Rouge continues to be a major concern, and one organization hopes change comes soon.

"Do I feel safe in Baton Rouge? That is a no," resident Latrice Richard said.

More than a dozen people, like Richard, spoke during a virtual meeting of Together Baton Rouge saying they don't feel safe after recent headlines about brazen crimes. Organizers say they need the community to work together.

"Things are a lot more scarier when you have a kid," mother Tewabeteh Negatu said. "I had taken [my son] to a BREC park one afternoon around 2 p.m. There was a group of three people, but two got out of the car with these long range rifles on the park. I don't know if it was gun sales, they were pointing them in the air, and I was like okay, I have to go get my son out of here."

Each community member says they have personally been affected.

"My son had his catalytic converter stolen out of his car. He's a school teacher. For about month he had to bum rides to be able to go and teach" resident Herb Bennett said.

The solution, they say, is everyday people coming together to educate each other about why crime exists and how to prevent it.

"If all they have seen is violence, and they have not been taught how to address issues without violence, they will result in violence," Alfreda Bester said.

Together BR is planning a community assembly at the end of June to discuss with more organizations what can be done.

"Basically carve up the city into clusters, the northern cluster the mid city cluster. We're working with those institutions to develop a strategy for their locality" organizer Khalid Hudson said.

The assembly is on June 25th. A location has not yet been set.

You can register on their website by clicking here.

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