Group of fathers trying to stop youth violence looking for more volunteers

PITTSBURGH — Penn Avenue is back to normal, 48 hours after it was blocked off by police tape after someone fired two shots in the middle of the afternoon.

“It’s a tragedy. And it’s terrible,” Leonard Carter said.

Carter is a board member for MAD DADS, an organization trying to stop youth violence.

Twice a week, he and other members post up at schools across the area during dismissal time, to try to prevent any possible violence.

“The issue downtown, I think, is a different issue because there are so many kids, and so many schools, and it’s a prescription for a problem,” Carter added

He’s talking about Capa, Passport Academy, and Urban Pathways, all within two blocks.

“I can tell you right now, we’re focusing on available resources to patrol these areas of concern,” Pittsburgh Police Commander, Matthew Lackner said in a news conference.

Those resources include MAD DADS, but Carter says they don’t have enough volunteers.

“We are trying to get to more places and we’d like to have more people downtown. The more people we can get, the more places we can be,” he said.

Pittsburgh police are also strategically placing bicycle officers, resource officers, and beat officers.

“Downtown is the heart of our city, and we want everyone to feel safe, whether they live, visit, take in a show, come downtown for dinner,” Commander Lackner said

Police questioned an 18-year-old and another teen in the shooting, but they haven’t charged anyone in connection with it.

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