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With 5 kids shot in 2 months, community begs for halt to gun violence

By Marielle Mohs

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    MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — North Minneapolis community and church leaders gathered Sunday afternoon along Emerson and 33rd avenues — just one block from where a 3-year-old child was shot playing outside Friday night — to demand and beg for the gun violence to end.

The child is hospitalized in serious condition but is expected to survive. However, that 3-year-old adds to a list of four other kids, under the age of 10, who have been shot in the area by stray gunfire in the last two months. Two of them have died.

Bishop Harding Smith, of the Spiritual Church of God, describes the area as lawless.

“We are here today because this is an outrage! We are losing a generation of our young people. It is so wrong when a young child is gunned down. Lawlessness has taken over,” Harding said. “These murders are crippling our community and it’s devastating our neighborhood.”

It feels lawless to them because no one, in any of these shootings of children, is in jail right now. KG Wilson — an anti-gun violence advocate who has helped clean up the streets from gun violence for decades in north Minneapolis – lost his own 6-year-old granddaughter on May 18. Aniya Allen was shot and killed while sitting in her mom’s car.

“I’m in a really angry place right now,” Wilson said.

He created flyers showing three of the young gun violence victims, including his granddaughter, with an empty box next to them with a question mark in it. He’s placing the flyers around the neighborhood as a warning to others about how dangerous it is right now.

“Your child could be next. I don’t want nobody to feel what me and the other families feel,” Wilson said.

He wants closure for himself and the other families by seeing arrests being made. He says he believes people in the community know who the shooters are in all five cases, but they are protecting them.

Tips can be submitted anonymously to Crime Stoppers of Minnesota at 800-222-8477, or online here.

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