Violence in West Memphis sparks community outrage

WEST MEMPHIS, AR (WMC) - West Memphis neighbors are raising their voices because they are fed up with crime in their community.

For a city with just 26,000 people, eight homicides through six months is a problem. And with at least one of them possibly being gang related, it's an even bigger problem.

"This is the best turnout we've had and you showed up because you're mad. I'm mad too. That's a 15-year-old child [that] got shot up on the side of the street," West Memphis Police Chief Donald Oaks said at a town hall meeting Tuesday night.

Dozens of people gathered outside a West Memphis church looking for answers for a serious crime problem.

But for at least one in the crowd, the solution will come too late.

"If you had a daughter that's the kind of daughter you wanted," Johnny Craig said.

His daughter, Jordyne, is the 15-year-old who was killed walking home with her boyfriend Saturday night.

Three days after her senseless death and police have not received a single tip about the crime.

"Why we got to go beg for statements. It's a 15-year-old girl," Craig said.

Despite the lack of community help, police said they do have a promising lead in the case.

It's not just a 15-year-old girl. An 81-year-old was able to survive a drive-by shooting last week. Plus, in late April, an off-duty Forest City officer was shot and killed in his West Memphis home.

Tuesday night there were many solutions proposed, including strategic policing and more sky cop cameras.

The biggest take away from this meeting is the community has got to come together.

It's too late for Jordyne, but maybe they can save another life.

"Us men got to get involved in the community.  Just got to get in there and make our community better," Craig said.

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