Mothers Against Gang Violence offer solutions following 17th Street Bridge shooting

Published: Dec. 1, 2022 at 12:00 AM EST
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ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - Parents are grieving over another death of a child in Metro Atlanta.

The latest victim is 15-year-old Cameron Jackson who died Tuesday from injuries suffered in a shooting involving a group of people Saturday night near Atlantic Station.

Police announced a major breakthrough in this case,Wednesday, explaining they’re looking for two people who are considered suspects in the shooting.

Right now there’s a $10,000 reward for information leading to an arrest.

Atlanta News First spoke to leaders from the Mothers Against Gang Violence nonprofit about some solutions parents can use to help ensure their children are not turning toward crime.

Tekesia Shields told Atlanta News First that her 17-year-old son is currently serving a 20-year sentence for robbery and now she’s making an effort to prevent scenes like the one on 17th street from happening in metro Atlanta.

After her son was incarcerated she created the Mothers Against Gang Violence organization to create a safe space for parents to learn more about parenting together in a judgment-free zone.

She told Atlanta News First she wishes she would have acted sooner.

“I’m one of the mothers who noticed a red flag and I closed my eyes to it and after working with the services in the system, I actually noticed that I could have done more,” Shields said.

Atlanta police released a new surveillance video showing the moments right after a group of teenagers were involved in the deadly shooting on the 17th Street bridge Saturday and now they are looking for two suspects.

Shields told Atlants News First she’s also a mom who was looking for a way to keep her son on the right track.

“The red flags that are noticeable are just the listening, the change in friends, the change in curfew, the change in activities, wanting to be with families, changing of nicknames, sneaking out of the house.”

Now every Monday night at six at the West End Branch Library in Atlanta she offers parenting classes to moms, dads, grandparents, and legal guardians who may be looking for new ways of parenting and disciplining their children.

“Find those different opportunities where they can do community service hours and the juvenile system provides community service hours for different organizations.”

She says once a month mentors like Travis Barber also come and speak about why they ended up incarcerated in hopes of showing Atlanta youth it’s the wrong mindset and helping parents guide their children down a different route.

“A lack of resources in the household, my mother working a job that couldn’t get me the Jordans, the jewelry, or the cars that I wanted so I had to get it by any means necessary and that’s the mindset for most black men that come from single-parent households,” Barber said.

If you are looking for additional resources you can contact Mothers Against Gang Violence.