Walterboro community marches to stop the violence

Walterboro Stop the Violence March (Source: WCSC)
Walterboro Stop the Violence March (Source: WCSC)

WALTERBORO, SC (WCSC) - People in the Walterboro community are taking a stand against violence.

A local group, The Community Action Line Against Violence came out for the Fifth Annual Stop The Violence March.

Juanita Harvey is the Vice President of the group.

"The violence that we're seeing in Walterboro right now is no different that what's going on any other place," Harvey said. "The difference here is...the size of our community is smaller."

The theme for this march is 'be the change that you want to see.' Harvey says you can do this by investing in yourself, the community and your family.

"The perpetrators of the violence is younger and the violence seems to be more graphic.. it has an anger to it so that's what we're seeing here," Harvey said.

Walterboro resident Stephanie Persianni moved there about 15 years ago.

"We have seen an increase in violence and young people death and it's just got to stop and that's why we're here today," Persianni said.

There were speakers at Pinckney Park who discussed how they overcame hardships and violence to lead better lives. They also encouraged others to do the same.

"Gun violence, drug-related crime is not going to get any better, communities need to pull together and help law enforcement to put these things away for good," Persianni said.

Assistant Solicitor, Tameaka Legette, for the 14th Circuit was there to show support. The 14th Circuit covers Colleton County and other areas in the region. She's also a special assistant U.S. attorney out of Charleston.

"Rather than prosecuting people that commit crimes if I can at some point stop the crime before it happens my work is made better," Legette said.

She say in her work she often prosecutes career offenders.

"Theory behind it is 20 percent of the people commit 80 percent of the crimes," Legette said.

She she sees a lot of gang cases in Colleton County.

"If love was at our core we couldn't commit crimes against one another," Legette said.

"We're not perfect but this is home to a lot of people and we love it, but we do work together to make it better," Harvey said.

This march was dedicated in memory of Harvey's aunt who passed away this month. Harvey thought about canceling the event but persevered because she knew her aunt would want her to continue it.

"She would have wanted this information to go out into the community she would want one person's life to have changed from this march and I think it will," Harvey said.

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