Fed up Durham residents call for cooperation with police

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Fed up residents take to the streets

We've seen many marches and heard many chants demanding justice in the wake of violence in cities and towns across America. But on a hot Saturday in Durham, while some left town for the Labor Day weekend, a dedicated group of citizens marched through the McDougald Terrace public housing community with a slightly different focus.

They're calling for more cooperation with the Durham Police Department to end violent crime in the city.

March organizer Rodney Williams told us, "We're staying in the house. They got us hostage. They got our kids hostage. It's time for us to run 'em out of Durham. They can't have it no more!"

Williams and the marchers got the attention of Eddie Hester, who told us he spent 20 years behind bars on drug charges.

"I'm trying to give another child something to look forward to. So if I can speak some way or help, that's what I'm going to do," he explained.

Williams seems to have a zero tolerance approach for some of the people who create problems that can escalate violently: "You can't save everybody! You got to save the ones that need to be, that want to be saved"

That said, Williams also advocates aggressive community involvement. He knows some people are reluctant to tell what they've seen or heard about criminal activity, but he wants them to get involved now.

"With that telephone," said an animated Williams. "With that telephone, and the public! We've let 'em, the whole community has let 'em take over."

He believes an involved, engaged community can also help the police drive criminals out of communities where people are sick for homicides, assaults and other violent crimes.

Durham CrimeStoppers offers anonymity and cash rewards to people who furnish information leading to the arrest of felony crime offenders. Click here for the CrimeStoppers website or call Crimestoppers at (919) 683-1200.

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