As Kansas City homicide numbers rise, community leaders working to combat violence

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas City is on track to pass 100 murders this summer. Anti-crime advocates don’t want to hit that milestone this holiday weekend.

“We’re just tired of it, enough is enough,” Contagious Life Church Pastor, Marvin Kirkwood said.

Kirkwood is challenging the city to a murder free weekend.

His church will be giving out free fireworks on Friday. He says ‘pop fireworks, not guns.’ On any given day, holiday or not, Contagious Life Church tries to stop violence through mentorships and conflict resolution programs.

“We’ve come up with this narrative that we call Kansas City, ‘Killa City’. I’m ready to scratch that off. I’m ready to eliminate that,” Kirkwood said.

Brandon Mims with the Ad Hoc Group Against Crime says this year’s murder rate is a continuation from 2019.

“It is extremely disheartening to hear that we are on our way to 100. I’m hoping and praying to God that we do’t get there,’ Mims said.

Both Kirkwood and Mims believe a murder free weekend is possible. But only if other rise to the challenge.

“I just really hope that at some point our city, we begin to value the sanctity of human life because it’s really what matters,’ Mims said.

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