Just hours before two shootings in Wichita Tuesday evening, Police Chief Gordon Ramsay was speaking to high school students about, among other things, gun violence.
“I am here guys because I care about you,” says Police Chief Gordon Ramsay. “There is too much playing around with guns.”
In a crowded backroom at West High School, gym bags down, headphones out, Chief Ramsay had students attention.
“We are seeing a lot of young high school age, and even middle school age, kids getting shot,” explains Ramsay.
Jaquez Hadley is a senior.
“Like you want it to stop, but you know it is going to happen eventually,” he says.
Ramsay kept the conversation loose but he drove home an important point after seeing an increase in shootings among teens.
“We have that discussion on being aware of what is happening and talk about prevention and how we can stop some of these shootings,” he explains.
“Sometimes you are like surprised but sometimes, you are like, it is Wichita. It happens.”
Hadley and another student India Lattimore are apart of Rise Up For Youth, a program that helps them keep their grades on track and their lives for that matter.
They see today as an opportunity to be a voice and a leader to their peers.
“If you tell them and you stand up and be the leader, they can look up to it gives them a better perspective on life,” Lattimore says.
Hearing from the chief makes them feel informed and with that comes a sense of important responsibility.
“One voice can do a lot. One voice can carry to another. A chain reaction. So if you tell someone something they might tell someone else and it is just one step forward in helping the community,” says Hadley.