Community members say recent violence drowns out message of equality, justice

Community members say recent violence drowns out message of equality, justice

CHARLOTTE — Residents are worried that recent violence will stall the community’s push for justice after weeks of protesting.

Three people were killed during a large gathering early Monday in west Charlotte. Several others were injured.

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Police are still looking those responsible for the shooting on Beatties Ford Road.

“They say, ‘Black lives matter,’ but does it? It’s us who are doing this,” a west Charlotte resident told Channel 9.

In addition to the deadly shooting on Beatties Ford Road, three more people were killed in two days.

Charlotte has seen 50 homicides in 2020, which puts it on pace to reach 100 for the second year in a row.

“Yes, we’re losing the message,” said Damien Jackson, a west Charlotte resident. “We’re losing the message very much.”

Jackson lives near where the shootings happened, and he's troubled by what he saw in the community.

“The ones who were out here marching with you, saying, ‘Black lives matter’ and then you turn around and shoot and kill them,” Jackson said. “It doesn’t make any sense.”

“We’re supposed to be talking about, ‘If Black lives matter, why are there so many killings in the Black community?” said Betty Oates, a west Charlotte resident.

3 dead, several hurt after celebration erupts into gunfire; police urge witnesses to come forward

She has asked a difficult question that Channel 9 has heard from many others in the last two days.

Oates said one cause cannot drown out the other, and the community needs to work on both before it can truly heal.

“If you’re only going to focus on one aspect and leave the other out, then someone is going to suffer,” Oates said.

A 2015 study conducted by Harvard University shows most homicides involve victims and suspects of the same race. The Bureau for Justice Statistics has said people living in poverty are twice as likely to commit a violent crime than people with a high income.

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