Community meeting

Meeting at Gaston Point to discuss ongoing violence and ways to prevent it

GULFPORT, Miss. (WLOX) – Community leaders in the Gaston Point neighborhood of Gulfport are set to meet this week in a bid to try to end the violence in their community following a mass shooting on New Years Eve.

In the days following the shooting, which left four people dead and three others injured, Gulfport police praised area residents for providing information to investigators that led to the arrests of four suspects.

Theressia Lyons is the person organizing the ‘Save Our Community’ meeting, but she said everyone involved was eager to attend.

“Everyone I called immediately said, ‘Yeah, I’ll be there, I’ll help, I’ll do whatever I can,'” Lyons said. “There wasn’t a single person who said, ‘There’s nothing we can do.’ Everyone was more than helpful.

Minutes before the clock struck 12 on December 31, more than 50 shots were fired, claiming the lives of Corey Dubose, 23, of D’Iberville, Sedrick McCord, 28, of Gulfport, 22 . Aubrey Lewis of Bay St. Louis and Nathaniel Harris, 52.

Four suspects, all between the ages of 18 and 26, have been charged in the shooting.

Mario Clark, 23, Vincent Armstrong, 18, and Khalid Williams, 26 each face one count of 2nd degree murder and two counts of shooting at a dwelling. Williams faces an additional charge for possession of a weapon after a felony conviction.(Harrison County Jail)

Lyons said she couldn’t understand the fact that the victims and suspects were young. She hopes this will help open the eyes of other young people in the community and inspire them to be a good example to others.

“I think what bothers me the most is that it’s our children. Our children are so young. It’s heartbreaking,” Lyons said. “My eldest daughter will be 20 this year and it’s hard to believe these are kids she went to school with, knows in the community and left. It’s sad that their parents have to bury their children at such a young age.

Lyons urges everyone who lives in the Gaston Point community to take the time to attend the neighborhood meeting so people can think of ways to end the violence.

“We hope to find solutions. We wanted to provide a way for the community to come out and talk to community leaders and come up with what we can do to address these issues,” Lyons said.

Last week, Gulfport Police Chief Chris Ryle applauded the community for speaking up during the investigation into the shooting.

“I can’t say enough for the community of Gaston Point. Your community said, ‘Enough is enough,’ contacting the police department, providing valuable information,” the chief said at a news conference on Friday.

The “Save Our Community” meeting will be held at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, January 11, 2022 at the Gaston Point Community Center. The meeting will be broadcast live on the Gulfport NAACP Facebook Page for those who cannot come in person.

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