ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — Anne Arundel County is studying ways to reduce gun violence in its own community in the wake of the 2018 mass shooting at the Capital Gazette in Annapolis.
A county task force made up of law enforcement officers, schools officials, communications professionals and gun owners is looking to identify the problems, causes and solutions to gun violence within the county.
From murders to suicides, the Anne Arundel County Gun Violence Prevention Task Force is analyzing all sorts of statistics with one goal in mind- stop unnecessary bloodshed.
Thursday night, the group heard from the public for the first time.
“We’re trying to figure out the most vulnerable areas so that we can bring an approach to that. Instead of being reactive, we want to be proactive,” Bishop Charles Carroll said.
The group was created almost a year after a gunman opened fire inside the Capital Gazette office, killing five employees.
Andre Chamblee is one of the co-chairs of the task force.
She lost her husband, John McNamara, a journalist at the Capital Gazette, in the shooting.
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Chamblee said that while the task force was inspired by the mass shooting in Annapolis, it is focused on violence that doesn’t make national news.
“Most people who are struggling with gun violence are dealing with suicide, domestic violence and one at a time shootings that can destroy families,” Chamblee said.
The group said the idea is not to take guns away from gun owners, but to include gun owners in the solution.
“We believe in gun responsibility if you know what that means, that the right people should have guns,” Carroll said.
This task force will combine their findings into a report, which they will present to the county by the end of this year.