‘I just wish everybody would put the guns down’: Columbus residents react to increased violence

Published: Oct. 4, 2021 at 7:28 PM EDT
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - A shooting in north Columbus, near several businesses, left a 20-year-old man dead. The incident bumped the number of homicides in Columbus up to 54.

Friday, Kenneth Lamar Griggs was shot and killed at Skyzone on Gentian Boulevard. Muscogee County Coroner Buddy Bryan says the incident was the result of a drive-by shooting. With that in mind, some residents are seriously concerned about their safety.

“I don’t like to go shopping because of all the crime happening elsewhere, which can happen in Columbus,” said Columbus resident Jeanette Davis.

“There’s really no one area we can say that, you know, you’re going to be safe here or are you going to be in danger here. It’s pretty much city wide,” said Columbus business owner Al Barber.

One of the Sky Zone managers News Leader 9 spoke with made it clear the shooting did not happen inside of the business. They say all they know about the incident is a car sped through the parking lot and left.

Davis says the topic of gun violence hits home. Her grandson Antonio Robinson was shot and killed in April 2012. Police say the incident happened after Robinson got into an argument over a group of women.

“It devastated my husband. His health went down. His daughter never got a chance to see him,” said Davis.

As the violence continues, residents are calling on the community to put the weapons down and come together.

“I just wish everybody would put the guns down and as the young people die, you know, my grandson had a great future,” said Davis.

“There’s a lack of opportunity,” said Barber. “There’s a sense of hopelessness, there’s a sense that we can’t find our way with young people, to prosperity to happiness to joy.”

Anyone with information on this fatal shooting is asked to contact Detective A. Moyer at 706-225-4435 or email him at Anonymous information can be given by calling Columbus Crime Stoppers at 706-653-3188 or texting VACS plus your message to 274637 (CRIMES).

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