Community members, lawmakers hold peace rally following homicide - | WBTV Charlotte

Community members, lawmakers hold peace rally following homicide

(Alex Giles | WBTV) (Alex Giles | WBTV)

A deadly shooting prompted a peace rally Friday evening in north Charlotte.

Germany Byers, 37, was shot and killed in the middle of the day Tuesday. He was found suffering from a gunshot wound at the intersection of Beatties Ford Road and LaSalle Street.

Several community members, business owners, and lawmakers rallied Friday in response to the killing. The goal of the gathering was to push for better community relations and a stronger police presence in the area.

Byers' family also attended the rally. Some family members spoke about the loved one they had lost to gun violence.

"He wasn't a violent type of person so for us to have to be out here it's bittersweet because it brings the community together," said Monterio Holloway, one of Byers' cousins.

Holloway said he had heard his cousin was shopping at the nearby Family Dollar and was coming out of the store when he was gunned down.

One woman has been charged in connection to the crime. Kyerra Guinn, 22, is charged with murder and felony conspiracy.

Family members of the victim think others may be involved.

"I hope they're caught soon because they deserve to be punished for what they did to my cousin," said Holloway.

Family members said Byers has three young children. They said one of them was just born weeks before the shooting.

The children said they will miss their father.

"I loved him. He was nice to me. He cared for me," said Byers' daughter Rahnyia Morris.

Byers' son, Anajae Morris, told reporters that his father did not deserve to die.

"He was just walking around doing nothing and then somebody came up to him and did something for no reason," said Morris.

Charlotte City Council member Al Austin and North Carolina state Senator Joel Ford offered their condolences to the victim's family before speaking to the crowd at the peace rally. Ford encouraged the community to work with him in bringing a stop to the city's violence.

"I'm going to call on the City of Charlotte and (Mecklenburg) County to bring in more resources for foot patrols and for a police presence along the Beatties Ford Road and LaSalle (Street) area," said Ford.

The collective group hopes the violence will start declining and families and businesses will start to grow.

"We have to take responsibility for our community and the actions of our community members and begin to take action of change," said Tiffany Fant with the Ubuntu Community Development Project.

Anyone with information about Byers' death is asked to call detectives at 704-432-TIPS or Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600.

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