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Consistency, unity essential to solving East Side crime problem, group says

‘Bridging the Gap' group meets in search of solutions

SAN ANTONIO – The drive-by shooting death of a 4-year-old boy as he slept in his family's East Side home last week has triggered a call for action from a faith-based group.

On Tuesday, member of the group Bridging the Gap met at the Redeemer’s Praise Church on the city’s East Side to discuss their concerns over the ongoing problem of violent crime that has plagued the area.

“I believe that the East Side has lost hope, but we’re here to change that,” said Andrew Bowie, pastor of the Victory Gospel Chapel.

RELATED: Neighborhood worried about violence in wake of drive-by shooting that claimed life of 4-year-old

The key to finding solutions is consistency and unity, according to Pastor Jimmy Robles of Last Chance Ministries.

“I believe that united, holding hands and lifting up our hands we can win this battle,” he said.

Robles praised community leaders, including the district attorney and police chief, for their commitment to addressing the East Side crime problem.

He called on members of the clergy to unify their efforts.

READ MORE: Mother vows to never return to home where son was killed in drive-by shooting

“I see a lot of churches that are closed down, open only on Sunday mornings and that’s it,” Robles said. “If the bars are open, why can’t we be open?”

He said that a proactive approach that includes prayer, but also includes action, is the first step toward finding a solution.

“If we all get together and continue to believe together and put action out there, be out in the streets helping, things are going to change,” said Pastor Shetigho Agbuke, of Redeemer’s Praise Church.

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