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The Roanoke Gun Violence Prevention Committee meets to talk about strategies



Roanoke, Virginia – The Roanoke Gun Violence Prevention Commission convened on Tuesday to deliberate on strategies for curbing street-level violence.

According to Police Deputy Chief Jerry Stokes, knowing who and where violence happens in the community is the first step in developing a strategy to prevent gun violence.

“We can’t stop violence unless we know and deal with shooters, and we can’t stop violence if we don’t go where people are getting killed,” said Stokes.

The year 2023 set a record for Roanoke murders. Five of the seven gun violence crimes that have occurred in the city as of January 2024 had taken place in Northwest Roanoke.

Stokes spent some time answering inquiries on the distinctions between firearms and gang violence in the city.

“We recently had a gang-related gun violence death, where there was an illegal gun sale, the illegal piece when that was part of the people involved in the sale were juveniles that made that illegal guns,” said Stokes.

According to him, the emphasis strategy must include important individuals, locations, and behaviors that reduce violence as well as how to respond to violent behavior.


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