A Jacksonville mom says her 17-year-old son was killed in a triple shooting in Northwest Jacksonville on Friday, days after their home was shot up.
It's a neighborhood Cure Violence workers have been focusing on to try to stop retaliation and violence in the city.
“Of course it’s discouraging. It’s heartbreaking,” Paul Tutwiler, CEO of Northwest Jax CDC said.
Tutwiler is a Cure Violence leader. He works directly with the peacemakers who are on the streets, reaching out to victims and perpetrators.
The peacemakers were talking with families near Abelia Street on Thursday night after two people were shot Wednesday. A Jacksonville mom told Action News Jax that her house was shot up.
Hours after the peacemakers left, she said someone came back and killed her 17-year-old son. Two other people were hurt in the shooting Friday morning, according to police.
“Our heart goes to all of the families involved. If we're not talking about families losing individuals, we're talking about new individuals who may lose their loved one to jail soon,” Tutwiler said.
Tutwiler said they can’t prevent every shooting but every situation they intervene in could save a life.
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He told Action News Jax that the peacekeepers, men from Northwest Jacksonville neighborhoods, have put in 457 hours of work since hitting the streets two weeks ago.
He says they’ve talked with 550 key individuals, people at risk of turning to violence, and have reached 801 people overall.
“We have two incidents that we can document we've interrupted something going further,” he said. “If we can sit down and think through the actions and the consequences... it’s time for us as a community to heal and find the root causes of some of these challenges.”
He said the group is working on getting a hotline activated, but for now, they are asking families to call their office if they suspect violence may break out in their neighborhood.
“We’re asking them to trust us, be able to literally give us a call if they’re aware of any type of incidents that may be arising so we can build a peace,” he said.
The group is not affiliated with JSO. Its temporary outreach number is 904-598-9196.
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