Police believe community programs key to less summer violence - KMOV.com

Police believe community programs key to less summer violence

(KMOV) -- Would you believe that gun violence is actually down this year?

St. Louis Police Chief Dan Isom said many people think we're seeing more gun violence than usual this summer, but in reality, shootings are down this year.

Yvette Peeples, who lost her son Alvin Dess Junior this summer, said she believes if more officers were on patrol, they'd be able to prevent shootings or catch more shooters. Isom said they can't be everywhere at once, but that if there is a spike in violence, they do move officers in that area.

Police are working to prevent victim's families from violence due to retaliation and are seeing results. The rate of solved homicides is up, but that will never be enough.

The non-profit group Better Family Life is quietly working in high crime neighborhoods to teach parenting skills, encourage parents to know where their kids are and who they're with and challenging teens to choose a different path.

Andre Redmond, 20, said young people in these areas should try and do something more with their life and that "there's more than just being on the street." Redmond is the beginning of a trend, and police are locking up more criminals thanks to connections by police made through athletic and mentoring programs.

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