Dozens march for end to violence in Newport News

Posted at 5:30 PM, Feb 15, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-15 23:16:38-05

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. - "Put those guns down."

Dozens marched down Wickham Ave. in Newport News chanting those words Thursday calling for an end to violence.

The march was organized in response to recent gun violence in southeast part of the city.

Monday afternoon, a 17-year-old was shot and killed at 32nd street and Marshall Avenue near a Boys and Girls Club location; the city's second homicide this year.

Thursday, family identified him as Stephen Davis Jr.

Davis' mother spoke after the march ended near the Boys and Girls Club where her son was killed. It's the same location he spent much of his time growing up.

"I did everything in my power to make sure my baby was good! And they took that away from me, but guess what baby, he's safe now," said LaTonya Boswell, who called on anyone with information on her son's death to come forward. "Speak up because this pain I'm feeling? It hurts."

A 15-year-old boy sustained non-life threatening injuries when he was shot at a bus stop on Marshall Avenue at the end of January.

Organizer John Eley says the violence is touching more and more people.

"Just last year I lost my cousin to gun violence and I never thought I'd be at the point where I'd be wearing 'rest in peace' t-shirts," he said.

Among those marching were local activists and kids from the local Boys and Girls Clubs and Newport News Police.

"That is what we need. We need the community committed to take the community back," said Interim Police Chief Mike Grinstead, who tells News 3 that police are still looking for Davis' killer.

Anyone with information on Davis' killer is asked to call the Crime Line at 1-888-LOCK-U-UP.