TACOMA, WA - Tuesday night, the City of Tacoma invested thousands of dollars toward cracking down on gun violence in its streets.
It’s a growing issue for Tacoma. Numbers show in a four-year period between 2014 and 2018, Tacoma saw a 37% increase in gun crimes.
In 2020, the city dealt with the highest number of homicides it had seen in decades. City leaders report 21 people died due to gun violence in 2020.
City Council unanimously approved spending $25k toward addressing this issue.
The money is invested in researching how to address gun violence. Specifically, dollars will go toward creating work groups, and finding best practices of where to spend money toward gun violence prevention efforts.
These dollars will also be used to hire a research team to address gun and youth violence reductions.
For some families in Tacoma, gun violence has already tragically impacted their lives.
"It hurts my heart to know that if something doesn’t change soon, another mother is going to be feeling the way I feel," said Kyndal Pierce.
In 2019, Pierce’s son, Jamone Pratt, was shot and killed while sitting on a friend’s front porch.
Pierce hopes the city’s investment will prevent other parents from dealing with the nightmare she now faces every day.
"Maybe it would have saved my son’s life," she said.
The next step is finding and hiring the people to lead this effort. City council says they expect to get answers from this research by the end of this year.