RICHMOND, Va. -- On the heels of several deadly shootings in the City of Richmond, Police Chief Alfred Durham didn't mince words at a packed town hall meeting Tuesday night.
“We have a problem with firearms in this city,” said Durham.
Sharing recent crime trends Durham was blunt about the challenges the police department faces when it comes to increased violent crime numbers.
He told the crowd of more than one hundred people how police continue to work to solve what he calls one of the biggest problems plaguing our streets.
Tuesday night dozens of Richmond residents shared passionate concerns about how to turn the tide of violence.
Neighbors and police alike challenged each other to be a part of the solution.
“There are more of you than police. We need your help,” said Durham. “We can't be everywhere, but you guys are a force multiplied. One things for sure, when you call 911 we will be there.”
“I have actually looked people in the eye. I know you're doing wrong. I've taken a picture of them with my cell phone. I don't care. This is my block and I’m taking it back," said one city resident.
The passionate comment drew heavy applause from the audience. It’s a message that Durham and other city leaders are hoping more neighbors will follow.
“A crime that you don't report… A gun that you don’t report today is a gun that could be pointed at your son, your daughter, your loved one. We have got to step up,” said Richmond City Councilman Mike Jones.
Many residents agreed to put a big dent in city crime, parents have to take a big step early on raising their children inside their homes.
“Plain and simple… You can't say it's not my issue,” said one speaker. “It is your issue because if you don't reach out while they are this big (gesturing to the ground) when they get this big (gesturing to the sky) you're going to have a problem.”