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Neon Tommy - Annenberg digital news

South Central Resident Says Gangs Still Top Issue Facing L.A.

Gabi Duncan |
October 6, 2013 | 4:49 p.m. PDT

Staff Reporter

Marcell Breckenridge (Gabi Duncan/Neon Tommy)
Marcell Breckenridge (Gabi Duncan/Neon Tommy)
Name: Marcell Breckenridge

Neighborhood: South Central

Job: Construction Worker

Age: 31

What are the top issues facing Los Angeles, and why?

Gangs. We need to get rid of them completely. It's just ignorant, stupid killing for no reason. It's senseless. Kids can't even go outside and play and have a normal childhood without worrying about getting shot on the street. I used to be in a gang when I was younger, so I know firsthand how stupid and pointless it really is.

What could Mayor Garcetti do to address your top priorities?

He needs to do more to give back to the community. There should be more recreational centers to get kids more involved in their neighborhoods. There should be more Boys and Girls clubs and YMCAs to keep kids busy, active and off the streets. Parents also need to get their kids involved or make them join a sport so they're doing something positive in the community. They won't have time to get into gangs.

Did you vote in the May election? Who did you support?

No, I didn't vote. I don't really follow politics too closely.

Would it have made a difference if you had more after school and athletic programs in your neighborhood growing up?

I'm done with the gang life now, but if I had that when I was younger I wouldn't have been into it at all. It would have given me someting positive to do with my time and made it harder for me to choose that path.

Reach Staff Reporter Gabi Duncan here. Follow her on Twitter.



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