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‘Why are we allowing this to happen?’ Calls for violence to end, community to stand up

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MADISON (WKOW) -- 2020 has been a violent year in Madison, capitalized Tuesday night when 63 shots were fired into a crowd of people at a park mourning a man killed in a shooting nearly two weeks ago.

Wednesday, both community leaders and community members called for an end to the violence.

"I certainly encourage all community leaders, all organizations and residents to really be unified and speak out against gun violence in our community," said Acting Madison Police Chief Vic Wahl. "I think it's important we have a unified voice and do that."

On July 25, Maurice Bowman was a riding in a car on Schroeder Road on Madison's west side when he was shot to death from another car. The driver was hit too, but survived.

Police say the shootings were targeted, and believe gangs were involved.

"Why are we allowing this to happen? And we're not outraged? And we're not meeting?" said Tutankhamun "Coach" Assad, founder of the MellowHOOD Foundation.

After the murder of Maurice Bowman and the shooting into the crowd mourning his loss Tuesday night, Assad is wondering -- where's the uproar?

"You march on State Street, the whitest Madison area, but you'll not march on 'Hate Street' -- some of these devastated communities," he said.

Assad says people of all colors show up when killings are high profile, but often Black people are murdered and it's just another news story.

He says there must be a reaction now to keep pressure building toward real, systemic change.

"If it took George Floyd's passing to get you motivated, then truly, you were dead," he said. "And right now, you're truly phony."

Assad says addressing the community problems that lead to violence require systemic fixes. That's what activists have been calling for, but their silence in the wake of the most recent wave of violence frustrates him.

"It has to be more than motion," Assad said. "It has to be a true movement, and a true movement means any time someone is trying to extinguish us, we are all equally outraged."

Madison Police have two men in custody from Tuesday night, though are still working to figure out exactly who the shooters were.

No one has been arrested in the death of Maurice Bowman.

Andrew Merica

Reporter/Producer, 27 News

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