Report shows most gun-carrying young adults in Crown Heights do so for protection of self and family

While overall gun violence is down across New York City, gun violence amongst young people remains a concern in many parts of the city.

News 12 Staff

Jul 27, 2023, 10:14 PM

Updated 272 days ago

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A group of researchers from the Center for Justice Innovations gave a rare look into what drives young people in Crown Heights to carry guns in a new report.  
Javonte Alexander and Basaime Spate spent most of their teen years on the streets of Crown Heights and now have joined the Center for Justice Innovation to address the gun violence issues in their backyard. 
While overall gun violence is down across New York City, gun violence amongst young people remains a concern in many parts of the city. At the end of May, a 17-year-old boy and a 16-year-old girl were injured in a shooting.  
The team of researchers convinced over 100 youth between 18 and 24 to sit down with them to discuss why they carry guns. In their report, they say 75% of participants carry guns out of fear for their own lives, while 72% carry to protect their families lives.  
The report also revealed that 76% of the young people they interviewed had been shot, and that 80% had witnessed someone be shot. That perception, according to the report, led many to gang life, with over 60% of them claiming to be involved in gangs.  


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