Gulfport double homicide causes community leaders to speak out on youth violence

Gulfport double homicide causes community leaders to speak out on youth violence

GULFPORT, Miss. (WLOX) - Two Gulfport families are mourning today after Tuesday’s deadly shooting took the lives of two teenagers. The shooting took place near Loposser Avenue and Layton Drive a little after 5 p.m. Police said the two people killed were 19-year-old Juan Harvey Jr. and 18-year-old Teraye Preston.

“It was bad; it was like a movie,” said Earl Bankston, known as the street pastor but is also a family member to the Harvey family.

When Gulfport Police arrived on the scene, they found Harvey inside a vehicle dead from gunshot wounds. Police found Preston lying in the road shot multiple times. He later died at the hospital.

Community leaders said they’re most concerned about the young people and want the violence to stop, but it takes coming together.

“What we can do is come together as a community,” Bankston said. “It takes a village to raise these kids. We need to put stuff in place for them to do because what they’re doing is looking up to a lot of these rappers. They think it’s cool to have these guns and to be smoking.”

Dozens of people gathered on the scene, and some even hugged one another for comfort. Community leader Jeffery Hulum III said the start to ending the senseless violence is at home.

“Parents got to engage their youth inside the home and outside the home,” Hulum said. “When you see something that does not suppose to be there like a firearm in the hands of a person underage who do not suppose to have a firearm, something needs to be said. That firearm needs to be taken, taken to the police station and turn it anonymously.”

Anyone with information about this crime is asked to contact Gulfport Police at 228-868-5959. Anonymous tips can also be made to Mississippi Coast Crime Stoppers online or by calling 877-787-5898.

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