City of Jacksonville allocates $336,000 to reducing violence in the community

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — You hear it almost every week: another shooting in Jacksonville, another act of violence in our city. Sometimes, a young kid or teen is involved.

Now, Jacksonville City Council is allocating money to prevent crime in our community.

Crime Stoppers and a couple of other local agencies are teaming up with Councilman Reggie Gaffney and Councilman Sam Newby on this bill which passed Tuesday.

Councilman Gaffney said his goal is to intervene in kids’ lives before it’s too late.

“Enough is enough and at some point you do get tired of seeing these innocent young kids, as well as some older folks, getting shot,” Councilman Gaffney said.

Action News Jax first told you in March when a teen died in the Oceanway neighborhood. Four others were injured; all of them were 17 or 18 years old.

RELATED STORY: Jacksonville police: Teen shot in shopping center parking lot in Oceanway

That teen’s death inspired the bill which proposes the City allocate $336,000 to funding small nonprofits with the goal to reduce violence in the community.

Shenku Boxing coach Dr. Anthony Mitchell has been working to get kids off the streets for six years. His motto reads: “From guns to gloves. To get youth to take out anger in a more positive way.”

“We get down to the root of the cause of: Where is there so much violence? Why do you have so much anger? What are you doing to change this?” Dr. Mitchell said.

He believes the money will have a positive impact on the community.

“It’s that micro that grows to make it that macro. It starts small, and most of the time those kinds of people are overlooked. People like Shenku Boxing,” Dr. Mitchell said.

The bill’s goal is to fund nonprofits that are in the neighborhoods where kids are in need of assistance, and perhaps educating them early and giving them a safe outlet will prevent future tragedies.

Councilman Gaffney said he hasn’t chosen which nonprofits will get the money, but we will hear more about that process in the coming weeks.

See the bill below: