FORT PIERCE, FL (WFLX) - A Fort Pierce 16-year-old male was shot Tuesday night near the Ellis basketball court, making him the city's third teen gunshot victim in a month.
Exactly one month ago on July 29, 18-year-old Toriell Roberts died from gunshot wounds. On August 4, a 15-year-old suffered a gunshot wound.
Now, a community organization is coming together, participating in a memorial march and peace rally, to provide teenagers with a way to provide information to authorities in a safe environment.
Kisha Armstrong, Roberts' mother, said she hopes anonymous meetings for teenagers to speak out, can turn the crime rate around. "To save one life," said Armstrong. "If we can save one life, then we're making a difference in a lot of lives."
Among the marchers who participated in Wednesday's peace rally, were members of Concerned Citizens United, an organization dedicated to ending assaults like these. "This is our tolerance level, and we're not going to take it anymore," explained group leader Chris Williams.
Williams said, starting next month, his group will provide teenagers with private meetings with Fort Pierce Police Chief Sean Baldwin in a safe environment. He said that can change the culture of "don't tell" that pervades the city.
"Giving them a group of support of people, so they don't feel like they're being singled out when they're coming forward with information," said Williams.
For 17-year-old Patricea Williams, her brother, Toriell Roberts, couldn't be saved, but she hopes meetings like those will bring justice to Roberts' murderer. "Whoever, I don't know, but I'm just asking God, just please help us find who killed my brother," she said, in tears.
Concerned Citizens United (CCU) plans to have meetings for teens the last Saturday of every month in the Community Outreach Youth Program (COYP) building. The address is 2017 Avenue D in Fort Pierce. The COYP is headed by Renee Jordan, in conjunction with CCU.