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'This must stop': Macon DA joins 'Just Walk Away' anti-gun violence initiative

District Attorney Anita Howard says she got involved to keep families together, and prevent violence.

MACON, Ga. — As the number of homicides this year soars in Macon-Bibb, one group is trying to solve the problem with a pretty simple message.

That message is, 'Just Walk Away,' and now some local leaders are getting involved.

Changing Mindsets says this initiative is a grass roots movement spreading from business to business, and church to church.

"We got different people. That's the pastor and the chaplain at Navicent," said Herbert Dennard with the program.

It's a simple message gaining traction countywide.

"We've got people all over Macon. We've got about 40 or 50 different people on signs," he said.

Changing Mindsets has town halls with pastors and other community leaders, but it doesn't stop there. They're putting up posters at gas stations, convenience stores, barbershops, rec centers and anywhere else teenagers will see the message. Each poster features leaders children can look up to.

"We're putting not just my picture, not just the district attorney's picture. It's all kinds of people from ministers to young people all over Macon," Dennard said.

The latest addition to their posters is District Attorney Anita Howard.

"No community has gotten safer by prosecution alone," Howard said. "We need preventative measures. And that's what this is. We want to stop that life from being lost. Lives on both sides."

Howard says those preventative measures start with a simple phrase like this, showing teens there's always another way.

"This must stop. So, any initiative that I can partner with to get that message out, that's what we're going to do."

Their next event will be at 10 a.m. on September 17 at Lizzie Chapel Baptist Church. It's a town hall event featuring several Macon pastors, Coroner Leon Jones and D.A. Anita Howard.


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