Daily Egyptian

SIU, Carbondale officials to attend community forum on local violence

By Bill Lukitsch, @Bill_LukitschDE

Leaders of the city and university will meet Thursday at a community forum to discuss ways to address the recent surge of violence throughout Carbondale. 

Interim Chancellor William Bradley Colwell, Carbondale Mayor Mike Henry, City Manager Gary Williams and Carbondale Police Chief Jeff Grubbs have agreed to attend the forum, which is scheduled to begin 6 p.m. Thursday in the Carbondale Civic Center at 200 S. Illinois Ave. The entire city council has also been invited to attend along with other representatives from SIU.

Sandy Litecky, a local activist who helped organize the event, said this will give town residents an opportunity to voice concerns with community officials. 

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“We’ve had shootings and muggings in the community and we really need to step up and try to do some positive things to make this a safe community for everyone,” she said. 

Litecky, a resident of the city since 2002, lives two blocks from where Carbondale musician Tim Beaty was shot and killed while helping two SIU student-athletes in his home in the early hours of March 27. She noted the tragedy occurred in a highly populated residential area near a number of churches. 

“It’s the heart of our community,” she said. 

MORE: Carbondale man dies from gunshot wounds amid spike in gun violence | Bond set at $1M for suspects in Easter shooting

Everyone who wants to speak will have three minutes to do so, Litecky said, and organizers hope to see a large number of SIUC students attend. 

“We really need students to be there,” she said. 

Bill Lukitsch can be reached at [email protected] or 618-536-3329.

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