With more than 10 shootings in the past two months, community members gathered to unite Columbia against violence.
Nearly 100 people showed up to both a walk in support of Danielle Marine on Providence Rd. and a block party on Rice Rd. in Columbia on Sunday to stop the violence.
“We’ve got to make it better for our young people,” said James Gray, associate minister at Secondary Baptist Church. “It’s got to be an ongoing conversation from here on out.”
People in support of Danielle Marine, one of the victims in a double homicide on Rice Rd. in Sept., marched down Providence Rd. to Douglas Park with signs showing a passionate desire for justice for Marine.
The overarching goal from community residents and local activists is to get the community involved.
Launsherrae Brown, a family member of a victim of gun violence, said, “We want people to get involved and be apart of bringing justice to these families.”
Columbia police shut down a portion of Rice Road for the block party event and despite the rain, many different types of people spoke up for establishing effort and consistency from the community.
“We gotta take action and I’m not going to stop,” said Delecia McConnell, a resident of Columbia.
Since September, at least 10 shootings took place across the city and six people died as a result of gun violence. One shooting death was a possible case of self-defense, police say.
“The violence needs to stop,” said Shemeca Marine Harwell, Danielle Marine’s sister.
October has already seen two shootings and now it has also seen two anti-gun violence events.
“Drop the guns and pick up them books,” said Mahzeen Cross, the nephew of Danielle Marine.