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Detroit Activists: Fighting “A Little Help” Crime

Detroit (AP)-Malik Shabaz tries to wipe out crime with one candy wrapper at a time.

Shabaz has been working for 37 years to make Detroit a safer place. He says this can only be achieved if enough people address quality of life issues, such as picking up trash in a nearby park, as we did at a recent city rally. East side, according to Detroit News.

“If you’re proud of your neighborhood, it affects everything else, including crime,” said Shabaz, founder of the Detroit New Black Panther Party / New Marcus Garvey movement. “We have to take responsibility for our community. That means getting up and doing something, and it helps a little.”

Shabazz is one of the myriad Detroit community activists who often work without fanfare to improve the quality of life of their inhabitants. In the most violent cities in the country, it usually means dealing with crime directly or indirectly.

“There are different ways to deal with these problems, such as providing an alternative to crime. Something like utility assistance helps work or school, but it all starts with love,” Shabazz said. Stated. “We cannot solve these problems in the city center without love. Jesus Christ teaches us.”

Over the years, Shabaz has organized civil patrols, handing out leaflets about unsolved crimes and missing persons, and leading drughouse protests. He, along with motivational speaker and former serious criminal Rafael B. Johnson and former Detroit News reporter and radio host Angelo Henderson, in 2010 after a series of burglaries and sexual assaults on the elderly. Established Detroit 300 Patrol Group. ..

“Many people move their mouths and do nothing, but Malik is there and he’s effective,” said Detroit Mayor Mike Dagan. “At personal risk, he and his group stood outside the drughouse, hitting pots and pans, and trying to get them out of business.

“He’s sometimes critical of the police, but he’s also worked with the police when he’s serious about catching murderers and the like. Under the current administration, he’s definitely a great partner.” Said. “He can go out into the community and say or do things the police can’t do.”

Shabaz-like moves help make Detroit safer-former Detroit News editor and director of Arise, even if their efforts are not necessarily directly related to crime control. Luther Keith said! Detroit-A non-profit organization that helps secure funding and provides other services to city community groups.

“All programs that help young people are security programs,” Keith said. “They aren’t considered that way, but they’re exactly what they are because these programs give young people a choice. The same with any program that does things like organize cleaning in the neighborhood-it’s Everything is related. “

Many police officers agree with that philosophy. Law enforcement agencies call this the “broken windows theory” and believe that ignoring the visible signs of crime and antisocial behavior creates an environment that exacerbates these problems.

Detroit Police Department Chief James Craig said he was grateful for Shabaz’s efforts.

“There is no doubt that he and others like him have helped us a lot in what we are trying to do to keep the city safe,” Craig said.

The chief acknowledges the efforts of Shabaz and others to help the city avoid looting and property damage during the summer of protests over the death of George Floyd in the strangler figs of Minneapolis police.

“We have had strong relationships with groups like him, so other cities burned, but Detroit did not.”

Keith said efforts to improve Detroit are often vague.

“Often these groups are active and unrecognized,” he said. “These organizations don’t have a PR company, so they aren’t well advertised, but they’re more important to Detroit than anyone else.”

Rashaan Mix agreed. The 46-year-old Detroit resident was one of about 12 people who recently joined Shabazz at Dequindre-Grixdale Park on the eastern side of the city to look for potential hit-and-run witnesses.

“I don’t care about fanfare. I love my city and I love people,” Mix said. “We see rape, murder, and all other unresolved crimes. We want to help find the people who did it so that the family can have peace.”

Shabbaz, Mix, and other small groups gather under the park’s gazebo to pray for hot dogs and then pay $ 2,700 for information that could lead to the arrest of a driver who ran for 27 years. Handed out stoppers-the old Stephen Radcliffe was around 1:32 am on March 17th.

Radcliffe had just picked up a pack of 100 Newport cigarettes and headed south on Dequindor, just outside Dequindor Gricksdale Park, when the 2011 or 2012 White Ford Escape struck him. I was walking. The driver hurried away, police said.

“I just want to know who did it,” said Radcliffe’s mother, Beverly Winfrey. “I was handing out leaflets, and I paid for two signs (an enlargement of the crime stopper leaflet). It’s great that others come to help. That’s a lot. Means. “

Winfrey’s longtime friend Dorina Andrews said the support helped.

“When you’re experiencing what she’s experiencing, it can be a little help,” Andrews said. “I know it’s not the biggest story in the world of hit-and-run, but the person who did it needs to be held accountable. Get up and admit what you did. This woman’s for losing her son Relieves pain. “

Detroit Police Department chief James Craig praises Shabaz and his colleagues for helping the city avoid looting and property damage during the summer of protests over George Floyd’s death from the Minneapolis police strangler fig. Said.

At some point Shabaz spoke to the group, a breeze blew a candy rapper near his feet. He reached out and picked it up with the other trash and dumped it in a nearby trash can.

“The cans are empty and the trash is on the ground,” he said. “What do you think if someone throws trash in your yard? This is our city. We are responsible.

“My great-grandmother lived in a house with a soil floor in Virginia, and she was cleaning the soil,” Shabaz said. “Why are you doing that?” And she would say, “I keep my dirt clean.” You have to take responsibility for your own. “

Shabazz said he hopes more people will attend events like at Dequindre-Grixdale Park.

“Sure, sometimes it’s disappointing,” he said. “I think everyone is sometimes discouraged. But I also get a lot of love. Elderly people come in and hold our hands and give us cookies.

“I love Detroit and I’m a Christian,” he said. “Love motivates me. Love for my city, and love for my people.”

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Detroit Activists: Fighting “A Little Help” Crime

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