Vallejo: Baby Baghdad Needs Help
Feb 10, 2010
Editor's Note: Bay Area news outlets are reporting on a rash of violent attacks by teens in Vallejo. What's worse: the youth or the opportunities?
It was recently reported that a 47-year-old Vallejo Department of public works employee of Suisun City was robbed and assaulted by three juveniles. One struck the employee before the other two juveniles approached and knocked him down and stole his wallet.
A crowd of students standing across the street at Britton’s Mini Market from the incident witnessed the attack; police hope to review the surveillance cameras to identify the suspects.
The employee was treated at Kaiser Permanente Vallejo Medical Center for a chipped jawbone, a minor break to his collarbone and a cut lip.
It’s crazy nowadays what people will do for a dollar. It’s also kind of scary knowing you could get robbed and assaulted even at work. Reading this article it made me wonder what kinds of households were the kids come from. It made me wonder about what has happened in their lives to make them feel they have to assault and rob different people.
A lot of young people today have no guidance and get caught into the hype of fitting this particular image of society, which leads them to rob and steal just to fit in.
I feel that that alone should be an eye opener for the city to build more resource spots for juveniles and young adults. Great resources would be more after school programs, or even more job training programs that get youth ready to take that real step of independence by obtaining employment.
There aren’t enough programs that keep youth busy, or mentors who help them reach goals they thought weren’t possible. It seems as if there aren’t enough leaders around to set good examples so the youth do just about anything to get what they want, that includes being violent.
But this story interested me mostly because I could relate to it.
I say this because I was once in the same position of these youth. I’ve robbed and assaulted someone before -- and gotten caught. I didn’t get anything out of it except a mark in central booking. Coming from a rough environment, I’ve seen a lot of violence, assaults, and robberies. I use to think that was the only way to survive until I went to jail and realized there was more to life than always taking what I thought was the easy way out but later found it was the hardest.
-- Sherry Blunt
In the past week V-town has been quite active lately, with reports of homicides, stabbings, gun busting, and mob attacks on a gas station. In the gas station incident, the person who videotaped this act of violence wants to turn in every one who was apart of this beating.
Even though it seems like that Vallejo is a baby Baghdad, the city has plans to step up their crime fighting efforts. There are fewer police lurking the streets due to budget cutbacks. The city will be getting help from neighboring Solano County Sheriffs department. Advocates for youth services say they want to help the youngster of Vallejo.
The 15-year-old boy who allegedly shot an ice cream vendor shocked the other young ones, even me. People are getting shot over ice cream.
Without youth services like Omega Boys and Girls Club, a community organization in San Francisco, youth and family services in Vallejo seem out in the cold. The work load might be too much for them handle made --maybe someone should step up and help?
Personally I think with the youth just need opportunities to work or programs that will keep them busy. Nine times out of ten young people get into trouble because they don't have anything to do. Knowing that your neighborhood is known for violent acts could possibly scare some people, or just force more violence. -- Young Dave
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