Organizers hope 3-day ceasefire starts conversation

Posted at 6:07 PM, Aug 04, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-04 23:25:36-04

There have been more than 200 homicides this year. This weekend, the community is speaking out about the violence. 

Baltimore's three-day cease fire starts Friday. Volunteers canvassed the community, pleading for an effort to curb the violence and killing. The message on the posters is simple: "Nobody kill anybody for 72 hours."

The idea is to urge shooters to put down the guns and promote peace. Friday night's rally in Southwest Baltimore kicked off the weekend.

"It's been tremendous progress in that first public meeting there were like 12-15 people and now hundreds of people across the world are supporting this effort," said ceasefire organizer, Erricka Bridgeford.

Bridgeford has been carrying signs, rallying for support and raising money for this cease fire for months. Now she waits to see if it will be a success but said she will help the victims of violence regardless.

"This weekend if people get killed, we'll be giving money to the families to use how they need it."

Those who rallied Friday afternoon say what's needed, is a unified voice.

"The power lies in the people who live here, the people who visit us, and to say that the only way violence will stop is if we step up in some way, shape or form," said resident, Tenne Thrower.

Young and old greeted drivers with signs, music and hope at the busy southwest Baltimore intersection of Wildwood and Edmundson.

"Just being in silence doesn't always work so it's at least showing that hey, this is something that were passionate about. Were showing that it's affecting all of us," Thrower said.

With the city's homicide count over 200, it's becoming clearer that no one is safe from crime.  One man, Devrone McKnight said he was just released from the hospital after being shot in the face.

"I was shot in the face with a shotgun. "It's amazing that I'm out of the hospital and crossed this path with you guys," McKnight said.

Everyone from west Baltimore, to Federal Hill. They're saying the same thing.

"We're the people that live here versus the people who are behind the desks in their offices were the ones out here day to day with our children and families and it's important for such issues to have a real face," Melinda Carrington said.

"I think that it can only help.  Anytime that somebody is willing to step up and say enough is enough is only going to be contagious," Tyler McCurdy said.

Organizers say this is just the start.  They hope to have more events like this in the future. The ceasefire runs through Sunday.