Annual July 4 anti-violence conference held by Miami-Dade officials

NORTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, FLA. (WSVN) - Miami-Dade commissioners hosted the annual “One Bullet Kills the Party” conference to urge the public to refrain from gun violence on July 4.

July 4 is a day of celebration, but too often, the weekend becomes violent.

Miami-Dade Vice Chairwoman Audrey Edmonson was joined, Monday morning, by community leaders, members of the clergy, law enforcement offers and local Brownsville residents.

The conference was held at Jefferson Reaves Senior Park, located at 3090 NW 50th St.

Edmonson’s goal is to stop violent crimes and prevent youth from being involved in shootings. “A gathering became a crime scene,” said Edmonson. “A celebration became a nightmare, and lives have never been the same again.”

Miami-Dade Police Director Juan Perez said police are committed to fighting for the youth in South Florida. “These are the kids we are fighting for,” he said. “The faces that you see here, this is what it’s all about.”

Perez said of the 48 murders in Miami-Dade County during 2017, 46 of those were killed by bullets.

At the conference, officials continued to remind the public to not fire bullets into the air. “Don’t use ’em on July 4 to shoot in the air,” said Perez when talking about firearms. “Don’t use ’em on July 5, either. Let’s just stop the madness.”

Opa-locka Police Chief James Dobson also spoke during the conference, echoing a similar message and encouraging the public to set a milestone this Fourth of July. “No guns fired, no one being shot, and no death on the Fifth,” he said. “That’s the history that we want to make here.”

A number of free and safe events are open to the public, starting Monday, across Miami-Dade County.

Copyright 2018 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.