Albany is enjoying low youth homicide rate - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Albany is enjoying low youth homicide rate

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ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

A new report today from the Centers for Disease Control shows crimes are declining.  The homicide rate for young people ages 10 to 24 are at a 30-year low.  

Back in March, two 20 year-olds were gunned down here on Willard Avenue in Albany. 

That's the kind of violence Boys & Girls Club Director Bob Hutchinson has worked to prevent for 42 years. 

"You pick up the newspaper and you see kids that even have got hurt or got shot or in trouble and then you say, my God I wish that Kid would have been in the boys and Girls club program or would have been in a program where they could have been well supervised," said Bob Hutchinson, Director of Operations, Boys & Girls Club.  

Fortunately, the youth homicide rate is at a 30-year low. That's news the Albany Police Department is happy to hear.  

"It makes us ecstatic because our stats mirror those same, we see violent crime is down in our area as well," said Phyllis Banks, Media Manager, Albany Police Department.  

Those Willard Avenue deaths are the only homicides of teens or young adults in Albany so far this year. 

Hutchinson says services provided by the Boys & Girls club and similar organizations help by keeping kids off the streets.  

"What we do, we have a total of nine operational centers here in the city of Albany, and what we do is we serve over 700 kids daily," said Hutchinson.  

The Albany Police Department appreciates those programs.  

"That helps the Albany Police Department out tremendously because we know when children are in those programs they're being active in positive ways and not out on the streets roaming around and getting involved in any criminal activities," said Banks.  

Hutchinson doesn't want a lack of money to deter parents from enrolling their children in club programs.  

"The parents say I don't have the money to pay for the kids to come to the program, we find a way through campship, through sponsorship, through identifying groups that will sponsor those kids," said Hutchinson. 

And in the end, save a life. To view the full C-D-C report visit http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr

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