Shooting victims' families ask for the gun violence to stop

NORTH CHARLESTON (WCSC) - The National Action Network and the Coalition held a town hall meeting Thursday evening to encourage the community to curb gun violence.

In a flier, it reads "only the community can get these guns out of their community!"

This week marks the 23rd shooting fatality in North Charleston this year.

The National Action Network had previously called for the police chief's resignation to fund youth programs.

On Thursday evening, victims of gun violence were pleading for the community to come together.

"I want the violence to stop, like today, like today, like right now," 9-year-old G'ona Gibbs said.

Gibbs lost her brother Demarco Jones last year when he was shot in front of his home and died in his grandmother's arms.

"It doen't feel the same anymore," Gibbs said.

Another family was out trying to get the community involved.

Alfonso Riley lost his nephew 22-year-old McGill Cason on July 2. Riley said McGill was shot and killed while taking someone home from a party.

"First time in my family that we've ever had a violent death, never had it ever touch home," Riley said. "It's been around us. But for it to come in your household, for it to happen in your family. It's devastating, it's devastating. It's one thing to hear about it, to see it on television, but when that dog is in your back yard, it bites hard."

Riley said it's up to families to try and keep their kids away from guns.

"I don't expect the police to raise our kids. I don't expect the school to raise our kids. I don't expect the daycare to raise our kids. I believe that we have a obligation. If we can bring them into the world, then we can raise them up the right way."

Riley said kids under the age of 16 are more likely to be armed than adults.

"Young teenagers that have guns., they don't have it just for protection. They have it on them to cause some type of destruction. Now granted some of them may have it for protection, but at 14 what are you doing with a gun, at 15 what are you doing with a gun," said Riley.

Riley said he hopes people can take away that a shooting could break up their family, even when they least expect it.

"Any time I see it happening, it just gets to me because we've got a love for people and we want people to have a great life, a good life and live a full life and make a difference in your life, don't just say I just live but I did something to make the world a better place," Riley said.

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