Petersburg Police hold community cookout in response to recent crime spike

PETERSBURG, Va. (WRIC) — So far in the month of September,  seven people have been murdered in the city of Petersburg.

On Friday, the police department hosted a community cook-out at Lieutenant’s Run apartment complex, to continue to build a positive relationship with members of the community they serve.

Some members of the community say that’s a positive start to solving and perhaps preventing crime.

Two weeks ago, Shaundrick White lost both his brother and cousin to gun violence. Both murders happened just hours apart. Now he plans on stepping up to the plate to make a positive change. The business owner says he now plans on leading a group of men in his community to be role models for others.

“If we don’t change this all together, the police department, the community, the people of the city, then our city is going to turn into a battlefield and who wants that,” says White.

So far this month, seven people have been murdered in Petersburg. No one has been charged for at least four of those murders. City leaders keep stressing that they need the community to help them solve these crimes. The city manager also says Petersburg has many positive things going on that will help to bring in change.

“All of it collectively has to work to stop crime, because as people get jobs and the community programs that we have, the schools are going very well, they are improving every day, all those things coming together for the future has to help everyone here in the city.” says William E Johnson III, the city manager.

Some community leaders are already taking matters into their own hands. On Monday, there will be a community walk through some of Peterburg’s most notorious neighborhoods.

“We are hoping and we are praying that it helps. We just want to show everybody come together, let’s talk about it.

Let’s get with someone and figure out what can we do to solve some of the issues that we are having,” says Tawanda Walker, a Petersburg resident who helped organized Monday’s walk.

Monday’s community walk starts at 6 p.m. at Farmer Street park and ends at Pecan Acres.

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