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Sun. Jul 21st, 2024

Community unites to call for end to gun violence after mass shooting

By meerna Jul11,2024
Community unites to call for end to gun violence after mass shooting

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It took Quincy Graham a moment before he spoke.

When he finally did, the first word he said was “sad.”

He paused even longer before choking on his next words. “Take your time,” the crowd around him at Detroit’s Marbud Park called out to him.

“She was a little girl,” he said of his niece, Shanae Fletcher, 20, who was shot and killed early Sunday morning during an illegal street party on Rossini Drive near Reno Street on the city’s east side.

More than 100 shell casings and nine guns were found at the scene. Police believe there were multiple shooters, but no arrests have been made. A 21-year-old man was also killed and 19 others were injured. The victims were mostly women between the ages of 17 and 27. Detroit police said Wednesday evening that evidence continues to indicate the shooting was not random.

More: Police say 11 victims of Detroit party mass shooting released, 8 others in stable condition

More: Detroit mass shooting prompts illegal blockade of street party: What it means for residents

“I’ve been through a lot of things in my life,” Graham, who grew up in the area, said of watching videos of young people scared, fearing for their lives as they tried to escape gunfire. But “I’ve never been through anything like this,” he said.

He said gun violence must end — “It must.”

Graham took issue with the time it took police to respond to the street party, which drew hundreds of people. There were multiple reports that neighbors called 911 hours before the shooting, but neighbors said police didn’t show up until it was too late.

He called on police to protect Detroit’s children, not just those living in the city center.

“If you’re acting like you want to protect these kids, then protect them. Stop pretending, man,” Graham said.

“We have to do something better than what we have done so far.”

As he left the podium the city set up in Marbud Park Wednesday night to call for action against gun violence, community members and leaders who had gathered at the park — City Council members including Mayor Mary Sheffield, longtime community organizer Sandra Turner-Handy, Ray Winans and William Nicholson of Detroit Friends and Family, and dozens of others — embraced him. They showed him love.

And they repeated the same demand: the violence in Detroit must end.

The meeting concluded with a moving prayer by Minister Fuqua Bey of Moorish Science Temple of America No. 25 for the community as it seeks a way forward.

Andrea Sahouri covers criminal justice for the Detroit Free Press. She can be reached at E-mail adress:.

By meerna

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