Triple homicide launches "Community Take-Back" - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Triple homicide prompts 'Community Take-Back'

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LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) -

Makeshift memorials of flowers, candles and stuffed animals serve as a tragic reminder of what happened at McMillan Park, where three young men were shot and killed.

Victims Jemenskian Arvie, David Galmore and Fitzgerald Guillory were all three laid to rest on Saturday.

Meanwhile, Armonta Hadnot, believed to be the primary suspect in the shootings, remains in the Calcasieu Correctional Center. Lon Porter was also arrested in connection with the shootings.

As authorities look for a possible third suspect, the community is also looking to move forward.

"It's been a tragedy, but also it's bringing us all closer together. It's time for us to get out there and know our neighbors," said Crystal Batiste Lee.

This is the second time in four months that Lee's family has fallen victim to violence. Her cousin, Anthony Batiste, was shot and killed back in December. Now, her husband's cousin, Jemenskian Arvie, is among the latest.

Lee was already organizing a "Community Take-Back" but said the triple homicide has launched it into high gear. So far, she has five area church pastors on board, including Minister Gilbert Brown who said it's time for change.

"Not just in the Fisherville area, not just in the Goosport area, not just in the Dixy Drive area, but all the areas of Lake Charles where crime is very heavy. We know the need. We see the need. Well, let's do something about that need," said Brown, Word of Faith Outreach Ministries.

The triple homicide also hits close to home for Brown. He, too, lost a cousin - David Galmore. Both Lee and Brown grew up in the neighborhood where the shootings occurred.

"They call the projects the hood. Well, as you can see me and Minister Brown both come out of the hood if that's what they want to call it. And there's good that still comes out of the hood," said Lee.

While they admit crime is going to happen, they believe based on the overwhelming turnout at the candlelight vigil, the community is ready to take a stand.

"Let's do it together and when we do it together, we can make a big impact instead of a small impact," said Brown.

Mayor Randy Roach also proclaimed Saturday, March 30 in memory of the three victims.

Meanwhile, the Community Take-Back group is still trying to organize their first meeting. For more information or to get involved, you can call Crystal Batiste Lee at 337-309-3505 or Minister Gilbert Brown at 337-502-1524.

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