While shootings persist across the Queen City, so does the heated debate over gun control.
Locals are banning together to reduce crime throughout the city, and groups like ‘Take Back Our Hoods’, advocate for crime reduction. Lucille Pucket found the program, she lost her own son to gun violence so she knows the pain well.
“It’s a reminder to me every day,” said Puckett, ” if you get one gun off the street it could be 10 lives that we’ve saved”.
Channel 9′s Anthony Kustura first met Puckett in north Charlotte, where CMPD officers were investigating the accidental shooting death of a five-year-old girl just hours into the new year.
Consistent tragedies like these inspired Mecklenburg County Commissioner Leah Altman to propose the use of $40,000 for a gun buyback program, the board approved it in June of 2022.
“I wanted to do something proactive that could help with our safety,” said Altman.
Months later, Kustura learned that the Health Department intervened saying it was not a good idea. This completely contradicts what was said in 2019, when commissioners declared gun violence a public health issue.
Mecklenburg County Health Director Raynard Washington, says there’s not enough data to support that gun buybacks work.
“I would say, is inconclusive, at best,” Washington said.