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Bowser Speaks on July 4th Gun Violence

In her Monday, July 6 situational update, Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) addressed the shooting of 11-year-old Davon McNeal, who was killed July 4 outside his own home after an anti-violence cookout. 

Davon was shot around 9:20 p.m. in the 1400 block of Cedar Street SE, said Peter Newsham, the Chief of Police of the Metropolitan Police Department. Crystal McNeal, Davon’s mother, is a violence interrupter and organized the anti-violence event to build community, the Washington Post reported

During the situational update, Bowser said there is no “magic answer” or singular budgetary solution to stop gun violence. But she added that people should resist giving up on progress. 

“That’s what we have to fight against: feeling powerless to stop gun violence,” Bowser said.

A 20-year-old woman was shot and killed at the 1900 block of 18th street SE July 4. A 36-year-old man was shot outside the McDonald’s restaurant on the 1500 Block of Pennsylvania Avenue SE July 4 and later pronounced dead.  

After a weekend of violence, Bowser said the District is fighting both a pandemic and a health crisis related to gun violence.

“This should not have happened and it cannot keep happening,” she said. “We can’t continue to lose our children to senseless gun violence.” 

“My heart is heavy as I mourn the loss of 11-year-old, Davon McNeal, who lost his life over the weekend to gun violence,” wrote Councilmember Trayon White, Sr. (Ward 8-D) in an email to constituents. Crystal McNeal worked with White’s office. “I spoke to four mothers in one week about burying their child,” he said, calling on the community to report information on the killing to police. “No parent should ever have to experience the loss of a child over someone’s senseless act.”

Bowser announced a $25,000 reward for information related to the murder of Davon McNeal leading to an arrest. The anonymous tip line can be reached via text at 50411 or by calling 202-727-9099.

COVID-19 updates

The District reported 33 new coronavirus cases and two new deaths. DC Health Director LaQuandra Nesbitt said the most common forms of exposure are household contacts and essential activities. 

She added that while the District is slowly moving toward Phase 3 metrics, there is no determined date for moving to the next phase. 

Learn more about current guidelines for Phase 2 here

Eva Herscowitz is a journalism student at Northwestern University currently interning with Capital Community News. She writes for Northwestern’s student newspaper, The Daily Northwestern. You can reach her at eva@hillrag.com

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