Gang member, Memphis Mothers Against Violence team up to rally a - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Gang member, Memphis Mothers Against Violence team up to rally against rash of teen violence

(Photo Source: WMC Action News 5) (Photo Source: WMC Action News 5)
(Photo Source: WMC Action News 5) (Photo Source: WMC Action News 5)
MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) -

An unlikely pair is teaming up to bring hope to a hurting community.

Gang member Frank Gotti is stepping up to teach other gang members to "put them guns down and fight like a man."

Gotti is partnering up with Memphis Mothers Against Violence to reach gang members in the Bluff City.

He says he's currently part of a gang. His unit, originated by Crips, is known as Eight-Tray-Hoover.

"I'm speaking out for gang members that don't, every gang member don't consist of violence," said Gotti. "It's plenty of us that's just for our community and want to build our community."

Gotti and Memphis Mothers Against Violence both say the deaths of 7-year-old Kirsten Williams and 15-year-old Cateria Stokes are tragedies from which the community must learn.

"I am so saddened by the violence that's going on here in Memphis," said Memphis Mothers Against Violence member Bridgit Bradley. "I'm saddened to my heart. I have four granddaughters myself, and I just couldn't imagine."

The team says the responsibility to keep our streets safe should not belong in the hands of city leaders alone. Gotti and the mothers are asking everyone to put down their guns and fight to end the violence.

"That's the thing. It's like our children," added Bradley. "They have no structure and it starts at home. Our parents, we have to be more proactive in our children's lives, not only when they are going out, when they're at school."

Gotti and Memphis Mothers Against Violence will hold a demonstration April 18 from 10 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. at the intersection of Rhodes Avenue and Getwell Road.

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