The community conversation on gangs continues: part 4 - WECT, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

The community conversation on gangs continues: part 4

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WILMINGTON,NC (WECT)- From October to December of 2013, recently released preliminary numbers from the Wilmington Police Department show that violent crime has gone down 12%. During this same time period in 2012, violent crime was up 77%.

Chief Ralph Evangelous has said this change is due to the hard work of the Wilmington Police Department and innovative partnerships with the New Hanover County Sheriff's Department and the Wilmington Housing Authority. However, Evangelous also credits citizen support for the decrease in crime.

"More and more citizens are picking up the phone and calling when they see suspicious activity. We applaud their efforts,"said Evangelous.
Another way citizens have been working combat crime is through Community "Conversations on Gang Violence."

It's an event series hosted by the city of Wilmington, New Hanover County and area stake holders.

Monday night will be the fourth meeting.

The focus of this particular meeting is to discuss the specific issues and solutions from a behavioral health perspective, affecting at risk school aged youth.

According to Wilmington City Manager, Sterling Cheatham, families are highly encouraged to attend.

The following are panelists who will be available to answer any questions:

-Lisa Burriss, New Hanover County Schools Support Services Lead Social Worker and Counselor

-Lt. Novella Frieslander, NHC School Resource Officer Commander and Juvenile Crime Prevention Council Chair

-Teresa Huffman, NHC Community Justice Services Program Coordinator

- Marrio Jeter, Communities in Schools Cape Fear Program Director

- Donna Lynn Pleasants, NHC Health School Based Licensed Clinical Supervisor

Monday, Jan. 13
6-7:30 p.m. at NHC Downtown Library

201 Chestnut Street

At least two other meetings are being planned for early this year that will likely wrap up this series of community conversations before final recommendations are developed.

One will be hosted by the Wilmington Chamber of Commerce on Jan. 22 with a focus on economic development and what businesses can do to help.

Another meeting is being planned by the Cape Fear United Way to consider the role non-profits play in combating gun/gang violence.
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