End the Violence rally brings Charlotte students to Raleigh

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- Video from UNC-Charlotte circled the globe on the last day of April after a gunman shot and killed two students inside a classroom on campus.

One of the survivors of that attack joined a group of concerned citizens who traveled from the Queen City to Raleigh on Saturday for an End the Violence rally on Halifax Mall.

Jack Siegel, a junior at UNC-Charlotte, told ABC11 that as he and his classmates watched that day, "All of a sudden, there was just three loud bangs. And everyone started sprinting for the exit."

What's their message for state lawmakers?

"We don't necessarily want anything radical or specific. At least, I don't. We just want to see action. Any kind of action. We want to see compromise and progress made toward a solution. Not just idly yelling at each other." he said.

Some people at the rally advocate required registration and information on file for all gun owners. But others say that may not prevent future deadly encounters.

Retired Carrboro police officer Robert Murdaugh said, "There are some kids in this world today, to be able to pull a trigger is no worse than adding an exclamation point to the end of their sentence, 'You have made me this angry!'" Bang!"

Siegel noticed Murdaugh, a member of the NRA who wore a logo shirt to the rally.

"We're not here trying to ban all guns or anything like that," Siegel said when asked about the NRA member behind him, "assuming he's here in some semblance of support."

Murdaugh told us, "Gun ownership is a huge responsibility. No doubt about that at all. But I think the government would spend money well to educate the public as to what the law was, what gun safety was. And make this available for free."

The legislative building at one end of Halifax Mall is closed for the weekend. But Siegel said if he saw any lawmakers, "I would tell them to really work, to make progress. All I want to see is progress, even if it's small."

Everyone at the rally shared the concerns of Raleigh-Apex NAACP president Gerald Givens Jr., who told the crowd that gunshots killed six members of his family: "Children should be able to go to school and be safe, and not have to worry about doing drills to protect themselves from gun violence."
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