ANTIOCH, Tenn. (WKRN) – Metro police data has continued to show violent crime is getting worse. On Wednesday, Mayor John Cooper’s Community Safety Partnership Fund (CSPF) advisory board met to talk about grants to help curb violent crime.
“Chaos, kind of,” Lauren Sackett said with a laugh as she described what’s been going on in her Antioch neighborhood. “People driving up and down the street, shooting guns out of their cars, into the backs of our homes. So, it’s just all kinds of craziness.”
The craziness Sackett is talking about has hit her home, in ways she could never imagine.
“‘Girl, go inside your house, check for bullet holes,'” she remembered her neighbor telling her over the phone. “I leave for vacation, it’s the holidays, and I come back and see bullet holes on the inside of my house.”
Sackett told News 2 her home wasn’t the only one hit. She described the other homes, “next door, the two houses over there and the neighbor all the way on the corner as well has been hit, as well as I think one more house up, so I think a total of four or five houses.”
Sackett partially blames the backside of the road. She described the constant racing, speeding and gunfire that rings out of nowhere.
“What is the reason everyone’s house is being used as target practice?” questioned Sackett.
On Wednesday, Jan. 11, the city’s Community Safety Advisory Board met to discuss ways to improve Antioch. In the meeting, board members talked about the 25 nonprofit organizations that applied for a grant, which would help curb violence. One of the ways is through Group Violence Interruption (GVI) programs.
“That’s what the GVI truly addresses — the known violent committers and or those who might be victims of that type of violence,” said Ron Johnson, Community Safety Coordinator.
The idea comes out of the mayor’s office, which is investing thousands of dollars into existing organizations that live and work to help their own community.
“These people have first-hand experience, but they also have been working in that field for quite a while and they are really ready to just dive right in and do whatever it takes,” explained Johnson.
The next stage is for the applicants to give a detailed account of what they would use the money to do in their community.