New Haven Leaders Work to Curb Teen Violence

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    A 16-year-old Riverside Academy student died on Friday morning, hours after being shot in the head in New Haven

    Community leaders in New Haven and Mayor Toni Harp are demanding the violence to stop after the shooting death of another teenager.

    Sixteen-year-old Torrence Gamble was the most recent victim of violent crime. He was shot in the head Thursday night on Daggett Street, and police were still looking for the gunman.

    “He was good kid he aint gotta go like that,” said Tavares Johnson. The crime happened just feet away from his home. “It’s close to where I live its scaring my family.”

    Johnson lost another friend March 24 when 17-year-old Taijhon Washington was shot and killed by Lilac and Butler streets.

    Washington’s half-brother was with him at the time. He was also shot and survived. No arrests have been made.

    “It’s hard," said Johnson. "I feel like I’m losing a lot of friends. I’m tired of losing friends."

    Community leaders have had enough and have called for the violence to end.

    “It needs to stop. The question is, how do we get it to stop?” said Bishop Theodore Brooks.

    Mayor Toni Harp is fed up too.

    "New Haven is once again struck by sadness today after one of its children was struck by gunfire and killed last night - the latest example of heartbreaking violence on our city streets," Harp said in a statement.

    Harp met with high school principals on Friday in an effort to find a solution and prevent future crimes. 

    She said she planned to have teachers, coaches and church leaders go door to door and talk to families to gain a better understanding of how to help New Haven teens.

    “We desperately need to find a way to stem violence so we don't have to bury our young people,” Brooks explained.

    The outreach should start in the next few weeks.