HAMPTON, Va. (WAVY) – Congressman Bobby Scott delivered $4.6 million to the City of Hampton Monday for gun violence prevention.
Scott presented the mock check to Mayor Donnie Tuck during a ceremony at the Mary W. Jackson Neighborhood Center.
“This is an investment that will pay dividends,” Scott said. “Hampton has a plan for reducing shootings, focusing on the the hot spots where the violence is is the most acute and identifying the families where someone has a high likelihood of shooting or being shot.”
The grant will fund three years. Almost $2 million will go towards staffing directly, with another $700,000 for police and $360,000 for mental health services.
The prevention tactics include education programs that highlight conflict resolution, the impacts of gun violence, and mental health.
The City of Hampton says murders were down by 25 percent by the end of 2022 compared to the year before. However, this year crime has spiked.
Data from the National Gun Violence Archive shows this time last year, seven people were shot an killed. Data from 2023 shows at least 13 people have died after being shot in Hampton.
The latest shooting in the city occurred last Wednesday on Queen Street. Two men were shot, and one is fighting for his life.
Hampton Police Chief Mark Talbot shared a message earlier this year the the community about crime.
“We need to understand your neighborhood like you understand your neighborhood. Sometimes frankly, we don’t know the question to ask,” Chief Talbot said. “We’re learning, but sometimes we don’t know the questions to ask. If we’re there, please engage us in conversation. Talk about what it’s like to live in your neighborhood even if we’re not asking good questions.”
This funding comes as Chief Talbot will make the transition to become Norfolk’s new police chief. He is expected to start his new position by May.
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