Leaders of a Fort Worth initiative combatting youth gun violence are aiming to get their committee set up by the summertime.
The “One Second Collaborative” is a partnership between the Fort Worth Police Department and the United Way of Tarrant County. The goal of the group is to reduce violent crime through community-based organizations and leaders.
“This is a very important topic for us. Youth, teen gun violence,” Fort Worth assistant chief Robert Allredge said Tuesday. “We don’t see anyone getting injured. We don’t want to see anyone getting hurt. We know police cannot arrest their way out of these problems.”
The final contract for the initiative was signed between the City of Fort Worth and the United Way of Tarrant County in late 2022. On Tuesday, Regina Williams with the United Way of Tarrant County presented an update to the Fort Worth City Council.
Williams explained how their “steering committee” will operate.
“We will have two representatives from Fort Worth Police. Two representatives from Tarrant County. Two representatives from the city. Two representatives from the United Way, as well as two representatives from our school districts as well as community at large,” Williams said.
She added the goal is to have a committee established and operated by summer 2023.
“We want to be prepared, seating that community, making sure we’re onboarding those partnerships. Making sure we’re getting the money out the door to those organizations that are doing the work so they can continue doing that work,” she said.
Williams said the decision to accelerate the timeline came after conversations with various city leaders, pointing to the recent deadly shooting that killed 16-year-old Paschal High School student Zechariah Trevino and injured his cousin.
The shooting happened on Friday, Jan. 20 outside the Whataburger on West Berry Street. Three people are in custody in connection with the crime.
“While we have issues across town, the cooperation and partnership that the chief has had with us has been extraordinary,” Fort Worth ISD Superintendent Angelica Ramsey said Tuesday.
Ramsey took a moment to address the shooting before she gave her presentation Tuesday on schools to city council members. She said the district has started looking at ways to support the family and friends of the victims. She thanked Fort Worth Chief Neil Noakes and Fort Worth Mayor Mattie Parker.
“To the mayor, who is pro-education,” Ramsey said. “Earlier in my career, I had the opportunity to spend a morning out at schools with her and I really appreciate that.”
Police say none of the three suspects in the shooting are current students at Paschal High School.