Charlotte mother who lost son in shooting: 'Something has to be done'
Charlotte mother Sevhn Robinson on Saturday led a crowd of local mothers, fathers, friends and relatives who had lost loved ones to gun violence, marching through uptown to remember their loved ones and demand change.
Some wore t-shirts with photos of their loved ones. Others held framed portraits or signs with messages like "End Gun Violence," and "Stop The Killings."
Robinson herself wore a necklace that had a picture of her 25-year-old son, Kyrri Dogette, who was killed in a 2017 shooting on Independence Boulevard.
Losing her son in that shooting six years ago inspired Robinson to create a group called Mommies Matter 2 Kyrri (MM2K) to provide support services to other families who've lost loved ones to violence.
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She also created the annual Mega Mommy March in 2021 to raise awareness of local gun violence and seek solutions.
"This is a time when we stand up and reflect back," Robinson said. "All of us out here know someone or have lost a child or a loved one, and something has to be done."
This year, the crowd of about three dozen gathered in Marshall Park at 10:30 a.m. and marched up 3rd Street to Romare Bearden Park, chanting "Stop killing our children!" and "Don't shoot about it! Let's talk about it!"
At-large County Commissioner Pat Cotham attended, along with representatives from the Mecklenburg County Sheriff's Office and the North Carolina Poor People's Campaign.
When the crowd arrived in Romare Bearden Park, Robinson thanked them for marching and read a passage from a book she said a friend had given to her.
"Start every day with new hope. Leave bad memories behind, and have faith for a better tomorrow," she read.
She also invited those who had lost loved ones to consider therapy, and encouraged others to sign up for life insurance.
Robinson and her husband, Charles Robinson, said they planned to travel to Raleigh next month to meet with lawmakers and encourage them to pass legislation addressing homicides and gun violence.
Robinson said she especially wanted tougher bond requirements for those charged with serious crimes like murder.
The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department reported more than 100 homicides in 2022, roughly an 8% increase over the year before. Police said 86% of those homicides were committed with a firearm. And 2023 started with three fatal shootings on New Year's Day in Charlotte.