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St. Louis leaders discuss a renewed effort to fight crime

The African American Aldermanic Caucus hopes to create a partnership to hold long-term conversations cracking down on crime.

ST. LOUIS — The African American Aldermanic Caucus announces a plan to have a permanent conversation about ways to cut down on crime in St. Louis.

The caucus wants to sit community leaders, law enforcement and politicians on all levels down to have an indefinite conversation about safety initiatives. 

"How long do we have to keep allowing us to look at losing two-year-old children?" 27th Ward Alderwoman Pam Boyd asks. "How long do we have to keep brushing it off like oh well, that's just something that happens. We are under siege. (We need to) Partner, communicate and come up with a plan."

Boyd wants to make sure mental health is a key part of the gun discussion. 

On Friday, the 3rd Ward Alderman Brandon Bosley introduced a bill that would set a teen curfew. 

"When you have a rupture in the pipeline you want to patch it," Adolphus Pruitt, St. Louis NAACP president said. "But in reality, you want to look at the shutoff valve. The shutoff valve for us is to stop kids from graduating to more substantial crimes."

Pruitt said he's interested in hearing all of the ideas. 

He wants a data-driven anti-crime plan that focuses on cracking down on small crimes and investing in education. Pruitt believes graduating in a different aspect is the best deterrent for crime. 

"If they don't graduate from high school, they drop out whatever, there's a good chance they get exposed to lower level crimes," Pruitt said. "They become unemployable which means they graduate to more substantial crimes."

Pruitt adds that any solution should be region-wide, crime doesn't start or stop at the city limits. 

Alderwoman Boyd hopes the group of leaders meets before the new year. 

He said he plans to hold town halls about the curfew in the coming weeks. 

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