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'Joyful noise:' KC Mothers In Charge asks drivers to help deter homicides

Posted: 12:36 PM, Jun 12, 2019
Updated: 2019-06-12 13:36:11-04
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A honking horn usually means someone has been driving dangerously, but some community members are trying to use the noise for good.

Statistics can be shocking, and that's no exception for Kansas City's homicide rate. So far in 2019, there have been 58 homicides reported in Kansas City, according to the group KC Mothers In Charge.

“We’ve had 58 homicides and it’s high," Latrice Murray said.

That's up from 51 homicides at the same time in 2018, and 25 of this year's 58 homicides have not been solved.

Murray and Pamela Dean, who are with KC Mothers In Charge, say they are disheartened by the statistics.

"Oh wow, that's really mind-blowing," Dean said.

The mothers are asking drivers to blow their horns and make a joyful noise on Prospect Avenue to protest the violence.

Executive Director Rosilyn Temple said it's something she plans on doing regularly.

"The way we hear bullets in gunshots in our neighborhoods, every day, all day long. We want people to honk their horns so we can let people know this is the noise we want to hear," she said.

Gunfire is a noise the group of women have heard far too often.

Most of them, like Murray, have lost a son to gun violence. That's why they're taking to the streets just one week after National Gun Violence Awareness Day.

"We're going to keep the momentum going," Murray said.

The mothers want children to have the chance to grow up, despite losing their own children to violence. Their mission stems from one-third of all homicide victims in Kansas City being between the ages of 17 and 24.

That's why the mothers hope that drivers will slow down and do their part to pump the brakes on gun violence. They are canvassing neighborhoods and talking with community members to get the message shared.

"If we can just save one life, it's a lot," Temple said. "I can't say we're going to stop homicides, but I know we can deter them."

The mothers hope that getting others to take action can make them a vehicle for change.

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