TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - St. Mark's Presbyterian Church was filled Tuesday evening, June 26, as community members joined together to raise awareness about gun violence in Pima County.
The goal of #URRESPONSIBLE, hosted by Ward 6 City Council Member Steve Kozachik is to start a conversation about holding gun owners and users accountable for irresponsible or negligent behavior.
The Centers for Disease Control reports 96 Americans are killed by guns on an average day. For every one person killed with guns, two more are injured. The reality hits close to home for many in attendance.
It was a packed lineup with representatives from several organizations and community leaders including the Tucson Police Department, Emerge!, family members of homicide victims and more.
"In this little bottle, this is what I have left, this is what I have," Toni Solheid said. "This is what I had, this is what I have now. Who is going to give her justice?"
Solheid's spoke to the group, six years to the day after her daughter's death. Genna Ayup was shot and killed on June 26. 2012.
"The only thing I can say, I guess, that is a good thing, that I know that he'll never hurt her again," Solheid said. "No one will ever hurt her again, because she is in a better place and I'll see her again, I'll see her again."
Police said Ayup's boyfriend pulled the trigger, but he said it was an accident. Charges against Ronald Corbin Jr. were dropped because of insufficient evidence, according to the Pima County Attorney's Office. Solheid said she found out after her daughter's death that her daughter was going through a break-up with her boyfriend at the time of her death.
"Words matter. Let's not call these accidental shootings, let's call them what they are," TPD Assistant Chief Carla Johnson said. "Reckless, negligent and potentially criminal."
Pima County officials said agencies respond to 13,000 calls each year for domestic violence. If you need to speak with someone about about an unsafe situation, you can contact The National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233.