Peoria mayor reveals personal connection to city’s latest homicide victim

Rita Ali
Rita Ali(25 News Now)
Published: Nov. 11, 2022 at 3:43 PM CST
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PEORIA (25 News Now) - Peoria Mayor Rita Ali’s community effort to solve gun violence in Peoria met again earlier today.

Peoria Police Chief Eric Echevarria says the Safety Net program is searching for solutions and that it’s been successful so far - because they’re getting more people involved.

However, the plague of violence on the streets of Peoria struck again this week when a 15-year-old was shot and killed - an act of violence that became even more personal for Ali.

“The homicide victim was my great nephew,” she said.” It’s very personal for me. More young people are in possession of guns and they’re using those guns rather than their voice, their words, their hands.”

“They’re using those guns and we have to help them learn how to manage anger and resolve problems without using a gun...but they have access to these guns, they have possession of these guns...”

Echevarria says kids are getting their hands on guns by stealing them stand taking them from unlocked vehicles.

He points to responsible gun ownership, locking up your guns and having parents take more responsibility in their child’s life as easy to make a change.