MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A community known for violence went a little over two months without a single shooting in Memphis. Since the beginning of 2021, Orange Mound has completed two no-killing challenges. The first push was a thirty-day challenge that started at the beginning of the year.
“After that, we had a 60-day challenge that was a success. The day after that we had a murder,” said community activist Keith Leachman.
This week a woman was shot and killed on Pendleton Street. Just days later a man was shot and killed on Carnes Avenue. A woman is now in critical condition.
“After the first two months, I felt like we were on to something. And then 3 people shot in 5 days. That’s bad, Orange Mound. That’s bad, Memphis. That’s bad,” said Leachman.
“It’s just something that should not be. I think that whatever we can do to relieve some of these problems, that’s our obligation,” said Promise Land Church Pastor Carl Williams.
Carl Williams at the Promise Land Church says his church gives out food to support families who may be without resources. He says sometimes not having these resources can lead to crime.
“We cannot just talk about it. We’ve been talking about it for years. We have to make some changes to impact our families, communities, mothers, fathers and grandparents create a better environment,” said Williams.
Both he and Leachman say they hope for change in the Orange Mound area.
“The goal is a hundred days. We set the path of 30, 60, and 90. If we can add on that 10 then we can set a trend and change things,” said Leachman.
The Orange Mound community says they will continue to do challenges to bring down crime in the area.