Hundreds Attend Community Meeting to Discuss Rise of Violence in South L.A.

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Hundreds of people pray during a community meeting at Hamilton United Methodist Church in South L.A. on Sunday. City Councilman Marqueece Harris-Dawson organized the gathering to discuss a recent rise in violence, particularly homicides, in the city. (Credit: Barbara Davidson/Los Angeles Times)

Thirty minutes before the meeting at a South Los Angeles church was supposed to start, the parking lot was already full.

Hundreds of people packed the pews of Hamilton United Methodist on Sunday — so many that some were left standing even after the choir lofts were filled. There were elected officials, community activists and gang intervention workers. LAPD commanders and a police commissioner. There were mothers whose sons had been killed on the city’s streets, and one man who had been shot himself a month ago.

Their goal: Stop the violence plaguing South L.A.

“We’re going to take our communities back,” City Councilman Curren Price said. “We can’t police our way out of this, can we?”


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