Savannahians still shaken up after this week’s deadly soccer complex shooting

Crime & Safety

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — Children and families witnessed the Tuesday night shooting at Jennifer Ross Sports Complex and local advocates say the incident was hard on children.

“That’s something that you never wish that you ever see in real life, especially with children, so just seeing how kids respond and how the kids are acting, I mean it’s heart breaking. There’s kids out there still to this day who are shaking,” says Todd A. Rhodes Jr, the president of the Savannah Royal Lions — a Nonprofit Youth Organization.

Rhodes has been taking this time to check-in with the kids he works with. He says it’s important for the community to come together to prevent violence and to support local youth being impacted by it.

“We have a lot of people that were shaken up by this incident that happened the other night at the complex, says Rhodes, “and we just wanted to make sure we were being a blessing unto them and getting them the help that they need and deserve.”

State Representative Carl Gilliard (D) of Garden City, says comprehensive violence prevention measures must be in place.

“The biggest thing is state power, because we didn’t get in this overnight, and we can’t patch it up,” says Rep. Gilliard, “we’ve got to do strategic plans for the future on prevention and that deals with you got behavior health, you’ve got mental health, you’ve got to look at where the guns are coming from that are in the hands of young people, so illegal guns, we’ve got to do more work on that.”

Local leaders are calling on the community to come together to end the violence.

“We all love our community, and we all live in this community, so why not all of us come together and recognize the needs of the community,” says Rhodes.

Representative Gilliard says there will be a press conference on Monday that will be focusing on community safety efforts.

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