CLAYTON COUNTY, Ga — A shooting inside a Clayton County Walmart is the latest example of public violence in the metro Atlanta area, and community members are starting to take notice.
One local group says they have had enough and are taking action to stop the violence.
Tyreeque Carr says his friend was an employee at a Subway on Northside Drive in Atlanta where two women were shot, one of whom died.
“I just recently lost a friend due to gun violence over the smallest thing,” Tyreeque Carr told Channel 2′s Larry Spruill.
Police said a customer shot and killed his friend for putting too much mayonnaise on his sandwich.
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Bruce Griggs, founder of the Saving Our Sons campaign, says they are working with teenagers to show them the impacts and dangers of gun violence.
“We’re not going to change any of their behaviors overnight, but we can at least show them that we care,” Griggs said.
Griggs said the key is grabbing their attention.
“We got to be in competition with the gangbangers and the hustlers,” he explained.
That’s why the campaign is providing music and sports. Griggs said their ‘A Call to Manhood-Boys to Men’ conference will be fun, but there’s a deeper meaning.
“We will bring young men between the ages of 8 to 14, and they have sensitive talks with positive adult men in the community to address this gun violence,” Griggs told Spruill.
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Earlier this week, Channel 2 reported on a shooting at a Riverdale Walmart, just down the street from the conference. Police said two men were arguing by the meat counter inside Walmart when one shot the other.
Griggs said the violence in metro Atlanta is beyond scary.
“It’s gotten to the point where it’s out of control,” Griggs said. “My wife is scared to go to the store.”
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“I don’t really think we’re going to be able to stop what’s really going on right now. We can put a dent in, though. This violence has gotten out of hand, but it’s not so far out of hand that we can’t save these children,” Griggs said.
Meanwhile, Carr said he believes this program “most definitely will work.”
Griggs said the event was planned months before, but the shooting and conversation about violence is timely.
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