Local activist says engaging with gang members can solve recent violence

DENVER (KDVR) – Terrance Roberts said he has been shot twice in his life and that part of his life is behind him. Now he offers what he believes is a certain solution to the recent violence around the metro area.

“It’s right now to get the attention it deserves,” Roberts said.

Crime has been so prevalent in local communities around the subway that it has almost become routine for some people. In a video recorded by FOX31, a child rides casually on their tricycle through an active crime scene.

“We need more positive activities for young people,” Roberts said.

One solution, Roberts said, is to give young people something else to do instead of turning to gangs.

“We need something that really reaches out to children who commit violence.”

He has already hosted activities with people who have been or are currently involved in criminal activity.

“It’s one thing to work with kids who are not already violent or not really involved, but it’s another thing to really be with the shooter,” Roberts said.

He was once involved in gangs when he was younger, so he feels with their experience and maintains that economics has as much influence on their choices as anything else.

“This is not just a black or Latino problem, it’s a poverty problem,” Roberts said. “My message to the young people is that even though times seem difficult right now, there is always a better day.”

He pushes back against arguments to defuse the police. Instead, he hopes they do more to improve their relationship with society.

“It does not make sense for a child to feel safer going to an adult who is an active gang member than they do to a law enforcement officer,” Roberts said.

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