Watch CBS News

PHA Housing Residents Demand End To Gun Violence In Their Community

By John McDevitt

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- Concerned citizens joined forces today with Pennsylvania state representative Curtis Thomas outside his Northern Liberties office, calling for everyone to do their part to curb gun violence around PHA housing developments.

"We are going to stop the violence," said Francis Gibbs, president of the PHA development Warnock Village.  "You with these guns -- we're coming!"

Along with other residents, Gibbs expressed outrage at the escalating gun violence in the city.

"We did have a murder on the night before last," she told KYW Newsradio.  "One young boy was on a bike, riding.  Someone shot him, and then, when the uncle came to put the teddy bear out there, shot him twice."

"The responsibility starts with us," said Rep. Curtis Thomas, who is calling on the police department to, in his words, "get busy" in putting a comprehensive policing strategy in place.

gun violence curtis-thomas _mcdev
(Pa. rep Curtis Thomas addresses a rally outside his office. Credit: John McDevitt)

"It has worked here before and it can work here again," Thomas (right) said.  "Put these officers on the street and out of these offices.  We need a sustained police presence."

Other recommendations Thomas has include an increase in police bike patrols, surveillance cameras, and a mandatory 5-10 year sentence for drive-by shootings.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.