MPD hosts annual Youth Crime Watch Conference featuring ‘Angel Moms’

MPD hosts annual Youth Crime Watch Conference featuring ‘Angel Moms’

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Think before you act. If you see something, say something.

These were just a couple of messages shared with hundreds of Shelby County students Thursday at a conference held by Memphis police.

"My son is Christopher Thomas. He was 22 years old. He was killed after an automobile accident,” said Tara Thomas.

"My son was Sherman Wilson. He was killed at 20,” said Marsha Wilson.

"My son was shot and killed Oct. 22, 2015 on the campus of Tennessee State University,” said Stacie Payne.

It's an unimaginable pain that’s shared by these women, who have all lost sons or daughters to violence. They're known as "Angel Moms."

"To help each other out and cry on each other. Lean on each other. Just to be a support for each other,” said Thomas.

Each of them with their own message of hope.

"Stop the killing. That's what I wish,” said Wilson.

"Think before you react,” added Jennette Addison, who lost her daughter Choosey Parker to gun violence.

Family of slain Memphis activist frustrated with murder investigation

"See something, say something,” said Payne.

The 'Angel Moms' were a part of MPD's annual Youth Crime Watch Conference held at Mt. Vernon Baptist Church Westwood. They spoke to nearly 800 students from across the county. Each sharing their stories after losing a child hoping to make a difference.

Memphis Police say hearing these stories gives students a look into the impact of gun violence, but the conference is also an opportunity for students to meet and interact with officers.

"That's an opportunity for us to share with the young people about what police officers really do and we want to change mindsets as we get them in and talk with them,” said Memphis Police Officer Clayton Turner.

As for the 'Angel Moms' they're hopeful these messages make a difference.

"I hope that we have reached everyone, but unfortunately, if we haven’t. If we just reach one, I’m happy about that,” said Wilson.

Copyright 2019 WMC. All rights reserved.