Members of Jacksonville community march against gun violence

Quench The Violence, Arms of Mercy and other community members held a community march on Friday to bring awareness to gun violence in Jacksonville.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla.Quench The Violence, Arms of Mercy and other community members held a community march on Friday to bring awareness to gun violence in Jacksonville.

The march began at the Duval County Courthouse and ended at the Riverfront Plaza. The two groups organized the unity march saying the gun violence in this city “has gotten out of control.”

“We organized the March because there’s been too many killings and gun violence in the city, especially just in the last month,” Robert LeCount, CEO of Quench the Violence, said.

LeCount said one thing that will help fight gun violence is coming together.

“We’re trying to bring the pastors, the police, the politicians, the parents, and the people together to show some unity,” LeCount said. “Let those who are out in these streets that commit these violent crimes see that we’re trying to do something about it.”

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Latasha Hobbs, who lost her son to gun violence, told News4JAX it continues to happen -- and that one is one too many. Hobb’s son Maurice was shot and killed in 2017. She said she does events like these to keep his name and story alive.

“My job as Maurice’s mom isn’t done,” Hobbs said. “I live every day to raise awareness about gun violence prevention here in my community.”

Five years later and his murder case is still unsolved. She said she has to put on a brave face to fight for justice.

“I had to take my pain and turn it into empowerment to make a difference and honor him every single day,” Hobbs said.

A member of Quench the Violence said they’re planning to have these marches every month and everyone is allowed to participate to spread awareness.

In March there were 13 deadly shootings in Jacksonville -- and three deadly shootings so far in April.


About the Author:

Brie Isom joined the News4JAX team in January 2021 after spending three years covering news in South Bend, Indiana.