Local organizations speak out about recent gun violence in Lafayette Parish

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There have been six murders total in Lafayette Parish this year. 

Two local organizations are fed up with the recent gun violence.

News 10 spoke with advocates for Christon Strong and Unity 7.

Christon Strong came about after the death of Christon Chaisson.

He was shot and killed in downtown Lafayette around 2 years ago, stopping a domestic violence dispute.

Meanwhile, the organization Unity 7 — tries to uplift and encourage the community, and teach better ways to handle situations than to resort to gun violence.

“To not have that person in your life in a couple of seconds, can be very traumatic,” says Tara Fogleman of Unity 7.

Fogleman and Kelly Thomas with Christon Strong, are both local advocates for stopping the violence.

“I mean it’s a shock anytime it happens, but when it’s your own family it changes a lot of things,” Thomas says.

Both women have personally been impacted by gun violence.

With the recent string of shootings in the parish — the two say the killers are leaving families without loved ones.

“And sooner or later you’re going to get caught, and you’re going to go to jail. now you’re taking away from your mother,” Fogleman says.

The Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s office says every case is different, but law enforcement sometimes sees a correlation between drugs and crime.

“So you can see that manifest itself in homicides, shootings, burglaries, vehicle burglaries. A lot of the inmates we have in our facilities, by in large they do report having an addiction issue, explains Lt. John Mowell.

The two women believe it comes down to more than that.

Including educating children at a young age, on the consequences of their actions.

“We have an absence of kindness right now”, says Thomas.

Fogleman adds:” I believe with more involvement on a personal level with the police department and even with our city council, I believe we can help improve what’s going.”
 

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