GREENSBORO, N.C. (WGHP) — Greensboro Police Chief John Thompson and other city leaders are at a loss on how to curb gun violence.
What they do know is we have to come together to figure out a solution. That’s why Council Member Dr. Goldie Wells suggested a day of prayer, which the city recognized Tuesday.
City leaders hope you will stop and take five minutes out of your day to pray over our law enforcement, the victims and their families and those who are behind these crimes. We’re up to 67 homicides so far this year in Greensboro. City leaders know prayer alone won’t stop that number from growing, but they hope it’ll spark action to make a change.
“We come to you today to reflect on the lives that have been lost to gun violence in our city,” said Dr. Wells during her prayer.
It was a prayer for peace during a time when senseless violence is taking over.
“We ask you to look on those who are disturbed and restless and without hope,” said Wells. “We ask you to replace the violence with peace.”
Chief Thompson and a couple of his officers bowed their heads Tuesday afternoon and listened to community members’ prayers.
“God, we’ll continue to assemble ourselves together,” said one man. “We’ll continue lord god until we see the change we need to see.”
Chief Thompson told FOX8 many of these people want the same things.
“I feel that they are making the same cries that I’m making, that everybody in our police department is making and the whole community is,” he said. “We really just want the violence to stop.”
To bring about that change, city leaders have to start somewhere.
“There always has to be a change in your behavior,” said Dr. Wells. “Change in your mind and that will dictate the change in behavior. So it’s an ongoing challenge that we have. I think prayer is one of the steps”
These officials know we have to offer more than thoughts and prayers to make a real difference.
“Hopefully it will really generate a conversation among those in the community,” said Thompson. “Maybe those that haven’t been involved in that conversation of what can we do to change the course we’re on?”
The chief has a message for the people responsible for these acts of violence.
“We’re going to know and find out who you are and we’re going to hold you accountable to the law,” he said.
Chief Thompson said his officers take these crimes very seriously and are going to do everything they can to hold these people accountable. Having the support of the community makes that job easier.