By Brenda Waters
May 3, 2013 – ALIQUIPPA (KDKA) — The city of Aliquippa is taking a stand against gun violence and they’re starting with legislators who make the laws to the people in the community.
Mayor Dwan Walker called for all hands on deck, when it comes to fighting what many see as an epidemic that is sweeping the nation.
The chief of police, several council members, a representative from an agency called Cease Fire, clergy and funeral Director Antonio Pitts joined the mayor.
“I see families on a regular being torn apart,” Pitts says.
The community has come together in support of background checks for every gun sold.
“We cannot sit on the sidelines for gun violence that is destroying our community,” Mayor Walker says. “Background checks keep guns out of the hands of violent people and saves lives.”
The mayor spoke from the heart in a news conference today.
“I myself am a product of that gun violence,” Mayor Walker says. “My sister was killed on September 5, 2009. She was shot and killed by an illegal gun.”
Mayor Walker has joined hundreds of mayors across the country in an effort called “Mayors against Illegal Guns.”
Like Reverend Tega Swann, many who live in Aliquippa favor the initiative.
“It’s an issue, it’s a fatal issue and it’s not something we should beat around the bush with, take the reins and try to limit it,” Reverend Swann says. “Right now, there is noting being done.”
“I am all about second amendment rights, I understand that, but victims have rights too,” Police Chief Andre Davis says.
So far this year, Aliquippa has had one homicide.