Concert held to end gun violence

Published: Sep. 24, 2017 at 6:22 PM CDT
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The event was held by ‘Iowans for Gun Safety.’ They are not against legal gun ownership, but they say too many guns are getting into the hands of people who shouldn’t have them.

Cedar Rapids Police Chief Wayne Jerman says 21 guns have been stolen out of vehicles in Cedar Rapids this year. He says a lot of those vehicles were unlocked.

He says, "There's 21 guns who are in the hands of who knows who, and that's concerning.” He adds that police have been more vigilant in their patrols, and that's help drop the number of shots fired incidents by about 20 from this time last year.

He says, "(Police are) making the stops and building the cases to make arrests of individuals who are engaged in illegal gun possessions and the shot fired themselves. Some of their previous efforts have since paid off because some of the individuals who were responsible for the shooting are no longer in the community because they are in jail."

The concert had songs, and local leaders talking about the gun violence epidemic across the country, and remembering those who were killed. Executive Director for the group Jeremy Brigham says a scary event got him involved with the group.

He explains, "I was at the University of Iowa back in 1991 when Gang Lu shot several faculty…and I had to get under a table in a classroom."

Jerman says police can't curb gun violence alone. That includes last week's shooting of Kennett Everett and Gabriel Thomas. Everett died from the shooting. Thomas was wounded. Jerman says they need help finding the person, or people involved. He says, "The number of shots, time of day (of the shooting), someone had to see something."

Crimestoppers is offering up to a 2500 dollar reward to anyone with information leading to an arrest. An anonymous donor is also willing to match that amount.