Cape Girardeau woman encourages community to fight what she calls 'a trend of violence'

Cape Girardeau woman encourages community to fight what she calls 'a trend of violence'

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - A deadly shooting in overnight in Cape Girardeau Friday night is part of what some Cape Girardeau locals are calling a trend of violence.

We've reported on at least six shootings just within the month of June; two of those shootings were deadly.

One local woman is doing her part to stop things like this from happening and asking others to do the same.

"It's a sad time for our town when people are scared to let their children out to play," Zoia Martin said.

That's one of the many comments on the Facebook group Martin has recently created called "Praying for our city, Cape Girardeau."

"I was prompted because of the violent crimes that have taken place over the past few months," Martin said.

She's talking about shootings like the one late Friday night on Jefferson Street that left 26-year-old Anthony Hempstead dead in an alley beside his home. As well as a shooting only five hours before on Cousin street, which sent one man to the hospital. That's not mention the at least four other incidents in June, including the shooting on June 20 that was also deadly.

"Most people believe it's just in one area, well it is right now, but it will spread out. There have been crimes going on in the county roads and there are things that are going to continue on. It's not going to get better unless we do something about it as a community," Martin said.

In less than 24 hours Martin's group gained support with more than 300 members.

"People are posting," Martin said.

She said members sharing encouragement and pledges to do their part.

"Our town needs more than just prayer, it needs action," Martin said.

Martin says she hopes the group continues to grow with more people invested in the future of Cape Girardeau.

"This has got to stop. Our young people cannot be at this type of a high of a risk and it doesn't matter their ethnicity or their economic standards, this affects the entire community," Martin said.

We are also told there was a prayer vigil for Hempstead Saturday at 7 p.m. on the corner of Jefferson and Pacific.

In addition to prayers, Lynn Ware with the Cape Girardeau Police department asked for citizens to come forward with information about these acts of violence. She says information regarding the incidents will be kept anonymous.

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