Rochester, N.Y. (WROC-TV) — Jaquan Hill was 25 when he was gunned down in the City of Rochester.
There’s a program now taking root in the city designed to prevent violence like that.
It’s based off what’s called the Advance Peace Model which is credited with helping to dramatically reduce violence in Richmond, California.
Hear more about this through Advance Peace Founder DeVone Boggan:
Dr. Kiah Nyame is leading this effort as the Office of Neighborhood Safety Coordinator and during an interview with Adam Chodak, Dr. Nyame said he decided to go for the job as he was honoring the memory of his son, Jaquan Hill.
Dr. Kiah Nyame: It’s divine and spiritual because I’m standing there at my son’s memorial with other folks and I hear this announcement on the radio because I’m always listening to talk radio … and I’m like, wow, that sounds like something that I can push this energy towards.
Adam Chodak: What’s the difference between this and what a lot of what we’ve seen before?
KN: The difference is that credible messengers specifically target those who are active in the shooting environment, or maybe because if they were active, then they’re usually going to be the next victim as well. So being able to intercede on that by giving them a long-term model such as a Advance Peace to help move them and sustain them because, you know, everybody thinks about quick fixes, but we’re talking at the end of the day, we’re talking about human beings, human beings that have been socialized to be one way, you know, which is a girl horse against the norms of our society.
AC: How do you initially make that connection though, as someone who’s active in a violent community, gain their trust and then move them into what looks to be a valuable path?
KN: You know, well, I went after my second half and my second opportunity to life, the same way I went after my drugs and my, you know, my income living in the world criminality. So being able to do that can be replicated, but it has to start with relationships. Individuals have to know that it’s not somebody just coming by and saying, oh, look at you, you’re doing wrong and selling drugs.
They know that, you’re not telling them anything. Or, you know, it’s more of, you know, I see what you’re doing, man, but, you know, um, I care about you, you know, and of course the first couple of times they may be, well, I don’t know who this cat is. I ain’t even trying to hear what you’re trying to say. You might even get, come around here again. We’re going to do something to you, but you go back time and time again.