Three people shot, two dead in Yamacraw Village this weekend. Part of a four days violence spree which has everyone anxious and worried.

District 162 State Representative Carl Gilliard says this weekend’s shooting was gang related.

“The Chief and them didn’t say officially what happened, but those were hits in Yamacraw,” explained the State Rep. “They came in a good house, so whoever was in the house.”

Its something he believes has become all too common in Chatham County. Gangs taking over, and taking advantage of good citizens. Good kids.

“What are we doing to prevent to prevent this young man or young lady in elementary of becoming the next statistic,” explains Gilliard. “Either the person to pull the trigger, or to lose their life.”

“Your child can be a product of that gang. Your child child can be a product of that initiation. Your child, because she is afraid, can be pushed into a gang.”

Something Gillard has first hand knowledge of. His own daughter, just in middle school, was approached by gang members.

“I’ve had the situation where i’ve had to pull one daughter (in middle school) out of that gang,” says Gilliard. “Its not totally the area sometimes, its what’s happening in middle school. Middle school is a very big recruiting ground for gangs. Big.”

That’s why he’s holding a Statewide Town hall meeting on March 8. Called “Breaking the Cycle of Gangs and Violence in the Community”.

Usually Gilliard believes these meetings are about speaking out at one of two microphones, and two days later everyone forgets about what is said. And nothing is done.

This he believes will be different, because it has to be.

“Hearing whats going on from the ground up in those communities. A lot of time people don’t know what’s going on on the ground. they only know surface, statistics and logistics. But its time to put it on the table and say we need to address it with a long term plan.”

“We had three murders, and when the community says hmm hmm hmm and nothing happens, that’s complacency,” explains Gilliard.

Gilliard says there are 20 known gangs in Chatham County alone. The newest and most dangerous problems may be national gangs like the Bloods and Crips – coming to Savannah and “educating” the groups already working and shooting in the city.

“It’s time to stop saying the Mayor did it, the chief did it so and so. we as a community are guilty as charged because we as a community are not focusing on a provincial level of stopping these murders.”

“We need a long term plan to alleviate the symptoms and deal with these problems we have with someone’s child that just got their life taken. We have a 17 year old student getting his life taken, and we need to do more than shake our head.”

“We’ve got to do more. There’s not one person we can point fingers at other than pointing back at ourselves to see what are we doing as a community.”

“Its not black lives matter, its all lives matter. Its not Savannah lives matter, its all lives matter”

Gilliard has invited all lawmakers, local, state and national as well as Chiefs of Police and Sheriff’s to come to the March 8 forum at the State Capitol in Atlanta.

He says poverty is also a big part of gangs being able to infiltrate communities. He plans to have more discussion, and unveil more programs to help in the “Poverty Zones”, at the Georgia Poverty Summit, in Savannah in May.