Street Violence

I was leaving a movie theater with my mom and sister when the article popped up on my moms phone. I read the article over and over again, confused. Depree Mims was a friend, classmate, neighbor, son. Depree was my friend, my classmate, and my neighbor. Every Wednesday morning in home room, at Merrillville Intermediate School, Mims sat right next to me. We had to sit in alphabetical order and P is close to M. Little did I know, the last time he sat next to me would be the last time. I was only 14 when I realized that gang violence is everywhere and innocent lives are taken all the time. Not only did I lose a friend who was a victim, I lost a friend because of a suspect in the case. One of the suspects was actually my best friends boyfriend.

I was born in raised in Merrillville, Indiana, and my best friend, Brie, was by my side the whole time. Brie, my older sister, and I did everything together and she was basically part of my family until the suspects were named. The four suspects committed this type of crime to get initiated into a local gang and in the end an innocent life was taken. The things individuals do in order to participate in such an organization has consequences and at first it may seem like all fun and games. Being in a street gang may provide the support, money, and friendships that weren’t present as these individuals grew up. The neighborhood wasn’t the best because of present gangs, violence, drugs, etc. Being around it your whole life makes it seem like the comforting thing to do to fit in and that’s why it’s a problem. It’s about protecting the people you care about and love to keep the feeling of belonging. Knowing why people join gangs is an important aspect to dissecting these organizations piece by piece. Hopefully one day street crime will decline by an outstanding number or completely vanish for the sake of everyone’s safety and innocent lives.