Community leaders meet with teens, call for stop to violence in SE DC

A group of community leaders in southeast D.C. came together Friday night to meet with dozens of teenagers, following the shooting death of a 17-year-old. Their goal: preventing any more violence from taking place where they live.

There is concern over whether there is a growing feud between kids from different neighborhoods, and their parents and community leaders want it squashed. They urged teens to come out Friday, and many of them did-- with more than 50 in the room.

It might have been tough to get the teens to open up, but just by being in the room, they were taking in the message: the violence needs to stop.

Phillip Jones, 17, was shot and killed minutes after walking out of a basketball game between Ballou and Anacostia High Schools on Wednesday night. A 14-year-old girl he was with was shot in the hand.

So far, there have been no arrests, and no word on a motive, but there are concerns about retaliation.

Jones was a student at Anacostia High last year. He was scheduled to start job corps training.

Trayon White, a community activist who is running for the Ward 8 D.C. Council seat, says he say the teen at the game just minutes before the shooting happened. He joined the other leaders who came out to speak to the kids.

In two days time, a total of six people have been shot in southeast Washington, including Jones. There was also a 17-year-old shot and killed in northeast D.C. last weekend.

There were a lot of calls Friday night for the mayor to get behind more programs for youth in D.C., and community leaders are looking for positive things for them to focus on.

According to White, the girl who was shot alongside Jones is already back at school.

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