GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) - Of the nine homicides in the City of Grand Rapids between mid-December 2012 and mid-January, two remain unsolved.
The string of deaths caused an outcry throughout the community. WOOD TV8 responded by holding a "Beyond the Violence" town hall meeting at the end of January, bringing together city leaders, community members and former offenders to try and do something to stop the killing.
Two shootings Wednesday in broad daylight -- neither fatal -- made it clear the violence is far from over. But some have seen big changes.
Brandon Guyton is a basketball coach at Union High School and a mentor in the Grand Rapids Public Schools district. He said he saw the town hall's impact immediately afterward.
"Even some of my kids knew people were starting to step up and police were starting to be aware of it," he said.
Guyton said it has inspired him to do more with the young men on his team, urging them to follow a positive role.
- Quiana Long and Chelsea Magoon were killed by Marvin Lockridge, who also killed himself.
- Royale Runyon was charged with shooting his brother Mahdi Hayes and police say he is also a "strong suspect" in the death of Eve'Vana Galloway only a few days earlier.
- The Kent County prosecutor ruled a Christmas Day shooting justifiable homicide and did not press murder charges.
- Tamaine Foster and Isiah Latham have been charged with breaking into a home and shooting Jason Cherry -- as well as four other men who survived.
- Anthony Tompkins was gunned down on Sweet Street by Ali Sharif Gray.
But it's still unknown who killed Robyn Griggs-Johnson and Greg Woods Jr.
Griggs-Johnson was a 47-year-old mom and grandmother. She was shot and killed when she opened the door to her home on Prince Street SE on Dec. 18, 2012.
Woods' death was the second-to-last. The 18-year-old was shot and killed after answering the door on the southeast side on Jan. 8.
If you know anything about those homicides, you are asked to call Grand Rapids police at 616.456.3604 or Silent Observer at 616.774.2345.
One of the groups that participated in the "Beyond the Violence" town hall, anti-bullying effort Y Do You Hate Me, recently posted a webinar for parents and teachers, showing how to work with kids on defusing conflict and responding to bullying or violence.
"The Town Hall was helpful in identifying not only the problems but the community leaders and organizations that are committed to together in finding a solution. The forum allowed us to share our thoughts, get on the same page, and network with one another to take action. Just by sharing, it seemed that healing began to take place and it was easy to see that not one of us should feel like we are alone," said Jeff Veley, producer with the Y Do You Hate Me movement.
Y Do You Hate Me, founded in Grand Rapids, just won a Golden Rule international award, recognized by the United Nations in more than 120 countries.
The Y Do You Hate Me has produced a free webinar for parents and educators. This webinar teaches adults how to practically equip students to respond to bullying behavior, defusing conflict while building the students' confidence and character.
Sign up for the webinar at www.FreeBullySolutions.com
A driver escaped safely after its vehicle crashed into the Grand River in Ottawa County Friday morning.
We get a brief break from the "lake-effect machine" Friday.
A few flurries occurred Thursday night. Lows held in the teens and the wind relaxed to the 5 to 10 mph range, with 20s at the Lake Michigan.