Stop the Violence rally held by relatives of shooting victims

- Families of the victims of recent violence took to the streets of north Minneapolis to urge the community to rally together to make the streets safe.

The rally was held Saturday at the intersection of Penn Avenue North and North 21st Avenue, just steps from where 58-year-old Birdell Beeks was shot and killed.

“People shouldn’t have to be scared to walk down the street or drive down the street, just on the fact these bullets are flying left and right,” said Sa’Lesha Beeks, daughter of Birdell Beeks.  “No one should have to live that way.”

Community leaders and elected officials, including Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges, were among those who spoke at the rally.

“What we're asking is that community begin to police their own neighborhoods,” said Anthijuan Beeks, Sr., nephew of Birdell Beeks and founder of community organization Face 2 Face. "There's a great number of individuals that are out here terrorizing these communities, they live in these communities. These individuals, they're comfortable with these communities. They know where to run, they know where to hide.”

The recent death of 2-year-old Le’Vonte Jones due to gun violence added to the pain and anguish of those who gathered for the rally.

“We need these people taken off the streets, before they hurt, harm or kill some more of our family members,” said K.G. Wilson, with United in Peace.

The Beeks family encourages anyone with information about the murder of Birdell Beeks or other recent unsolved crimes in north Minneapolis to call police, or community leaders who can pass that information along.

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