Community Leaders in Salisbury Rally Together Tuesday to "Stop t - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Community Leaders in Salisbury Rally Together Tuesday to "Stop the Violence"

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SALISBURY, Md.- Community leaders and others who have been affected by violence rallied together Tuesday night at their first meeting to "Stop the Violence" in Salisbury.

Shanell Taylor lost her son Rakim nearly two years ago. Rakim was shot and killed in a drive-by shooting outside of America's Best Value Inn in Salisbury.

"For a kid not to be in the street and not be involved in the street and to be taken so suddenly and tragically, it's just why, why my son?" Taylor said. 

After her loss, Taylor said she felt inspired to connect with the youth of Salisbury and help them better their lives.

"I believe that there should be group effort amongst the parents, amongst the community, amongst the churches. If everyone could come together and show love to each other," Taylor said.

Organizer and Salisbury City Councilwoman April Jackson of District One said she was inspired by two events in particular to start this group. The first was the early July shooting that occurred outside of the Salisbury Denny's that left two men dead. The second was after her grandson was recently sentenced to 25 years in prison. 

"We just can't wait for others to die or go to prison we have to do something... we have to act now," Jackson said.

Bishop George Copeland of United Faith Church of Deliverance in Salisbury agreed with Jackson and said, "It's going to take some effort for us to say, 'Look, let's reach out.' We have to find the ground, find out from the youth...let's engage with them. I think we're talking at them instead of talking together, talking to them."

Organizers said they will hold a meeting once a month and encourage kids of all ages to come out.

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