Springfield murder victim’s brother wants to stop violence

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

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James Cooper, 30, of Springfield, said young people are reaching for guns to solve conflicts, leading to a sharp increase in violent crime in the city the past two years.

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

The brother of a Springfield homicide victim said he hopes to start a mentoring program for kids so they can learn to resolve conflicts without picking up a gun.

“When I was growing up, you didn’t hear about people getting shot like this. The worst would be a fist fight,” James Cooper said. “Now you have that perception that he has a gun so I have to get mine now.”

Cooper’s brother, George Walker Jr., 20, was shot and killed on May 30, 2014. His death was one of eight homicides that year, followed by 12 in 2015 — the highest number Springfield has seen in at least 15 years.

The Springfield News-Sun is talking to the community about numerous efforts to stop the upward violent crime trend.

Watch for coverage on springfieldnewssun.com all week long and read the full story in Sunday’s paper.

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