Crimes and Consequences event gets real for Bayou View Middle School students

Published: Oct. 21, 2022 at 5:48 PM CDT
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GULFPORT, Miss. (WLOX) - The Crime and Consequences presentation is entertaining, interactive and serious - almost to the point of frightening.

“I really just wanted to get through to these children,” said Gulfport Police Chief Adam Cooper. “Sometimes I feel like I’m being a little harsh, but they really need to hear reality.”

Consequences don’t get any more real than the recent officer-involved shooting that killed 15-year-old Jaheim McMillan. Chief Cooper said that makes this event even more important.

“It makes this have a lot of significance in the fact that we’re trying to get to these kids before it ends up in a child’s death, either by the hands of one of their friends, or even law enforcement,” he said.

That’s something that gives students like eighth-grader Adam Griffin a lot to think about.

“Yes. It really scares me that could really happen to you,” Griffin said.

Friday’s presentation to Bayou View Middle School students was a collaboration between radio station JZ 94.5, the Gulfport Police Department, and the District Attorney’s office. And it was planned before the shooting happened.

Radio station JZ 94.5 has been doing Crime and Consequence programming for years.

“I shared with them earlier that today controls your tomorrow,” said Michael Daniels with JZ 94.5. “So, the biggest thing is them learning from mistakes, and also, trying not to make mistakes.”

And while the recent deadly shooting has created questions and concerns, the station is committed to supporting the effort and the police.

“The age group we’re looking at now here at Bayou View Middle School and also other middle schools, are right there with young Jaheim, who was fatally shot,” Daniels said. “We support the police 100 percent. I think, like everyone, we just want to understand what’s going on. And, again, no one is above the law.”

The lessons are getting through.

“Don’t commit a crime,” Griffin said.

And students know the consequences include jail.

“And it’s on your record, which is really bad,” he added. “So, if you want a job, it’s on your record.”

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