Meridian Group is "Taking Back the City"

Meridian, Miss. Citizens of Meridian say they are taking their city back.

With violence on the rise, people are becoming more outspoken. Like this group who gathered at the steps of City Hall to promote the message of unity and crime prevention. Organizers say the best way to start is at the source.

"My personal issue and cause is domestic violence because I believe all the crime that we're seeing and the youthful gang members committing these crimes, goes back to the violence that they saw in their homes and in their communities," organizer Tina Patterson says.

The event started with an idea. Patterson says her friend Ida Brown changed her profile picture on Facebook to one of her holding this sign: I am taking back my city. She took the idea and ran with it. The group came with their own signs, cheering and praying for peace.

The crowd was filled with plenty of young people, who say violence has touched their everyday lives.

"I hear like shooting around my house and dangers around my house, and I don't feel safe," Darryl Johnson says.

One of which is Kavin Gibbs, whose brother, Christopher Gregory, was just murdered this year. He's become known for his YouTube videos asking Meridian to stop the violence.

"I just want to see people safe. It's not just about my brother because no one body is more important than another one," Kavin Gibbs says. "It's all about people are equal. I just want to see people safe, where you can go around, and you can walk the streets without having to worry about being shot at or being hurt or anything."

This is the group's first community gathering, but they say you haven't heard the last from them. They'll keep going until they take their city back.