MOBILE, Ala. (WKRG) — The Mobile Police Department released roughly a minute-long video on Facebook featuring two 11-year-old boys “in the quest to save the lives of their generation from gun violence.”
The one minute, 11 second video is titled “Put the Guns Down” and shows the boys, Jeremiah and Hunter, seemingly walking on a sidewalk after school.
The two boys begin talking about a “shooting that happened yesterday,” and further discuss the problem of gun violence.
“People keep killing each other and it’s like no one even cares. I’m tired of it, I just wish it would stop.”
The other boy responds saying, “Me too, it seems like everyday innocent people are killed just because they are in the wrong place at the wrong time. Sometimes when I walk down the street, I think ‘Am I safe or am I in the wrong place?’
“The solution is so simple,” responds the first boy. “No gun violence in our community means less deaths.”
At the end of the video, an older man named Josh greets the two boys, looks to the camera and says:
“Life is valuable, man. Death is so final, when you pull the trigger, there’s no coming back from that. So please, put the guns down.”
There have been several shootings in the Mobile area in the last couple of weeks. Two people were injured in a shooting at the I-65 Walmart on Dec. 27. There was a shooting at Paparazzi Club on Nov. 26 where four people were injured. On New Year’s Eve, one person was killed while nine were injured in a shooting in downtown Mobile.
WKRG News 5 spoke with Chief of Police Paul Prine about the recent gun violence and emphasized that nothing can stop criminals who intend on doing something wrong.
“If somebody’s intent, or bent on hurting someone, or worse, killing someone, I could have had another 100 officers down there, and it would have not prevented anything,” said Prine. “And so the public needs to understand. There have been many interviews by local media down there interviewing patrons down on Dauphin Street, that simply said Mobile police was out in full force, people felt safe. And the thing to know is that people do feel safe. And we did have a large contingency of officers out there. When I’ve always said from the very beginning of my administration, we’re not going to tolerate this criminal activity. Not tolerating doesn’t mean that we’re always going to be in a position to prevent it or stop it. But it does mean where we can when we can. We will expand every resources at this city to bring people to justice.”Chief of Police Paul Prine
Mayor Sandy Stimpson released a statement following the New Year’s Eve shooting, which said, in part:
“I am beyond disgusted that the actions of one or two individuals with suspected gang affiliations have taken a life, injured others and tarnished what should have been a safe and fun event.”
The Mobile City Council also released a statement which closely echoed the mayor’s remarks.
According to a Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Justice Statistics report in reference to 2021 violent crime statistics, Mobile ranked the highest of the roughly 150 cities reported with the highest rate. The report shows that Mobile had a violent crime rate of 2,042 violent crimes per 100,000.
It is important to note several highly-populated cities including all Florida cities.