Time to end violence in Natchez

Published 12:11 am Friday, January 25, 2019

Sadly, Natchez is starting out the New Year as it left off the old one — with violence.

In what marked the city’s first murder of 2019, a local artist was gunned down Tuesday night in a shooting on North Rankin Street.

James Henry Williams apparently became caught up in a dispute between his brother and another man.

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A gun was pulled and Williams was killed.

As Adams County Coroner James Lee said after Tuesday’s shooting, “Everyone I know is reaching out to prevent these shootings. I’m so saddened for the family.”

Lee is correct. Many people in our community are talking about how to reduce the violence that took 14 lives in our community last year.

Last year’s murder totals averaged one person killed every 26 days.

This year, almost exactly on last year’s mathematical average, on the 22nd day of January, Williams became another grim statistic. Williams, 54, has apparently lived an interesting, sometimes difficult life. But in the last several years he became a well-known, primitive folk artist in our community.

Our community must continue to follow through with what law enforcement leaders have been preaching — if you see something (suspicious or even downright criminal) say something.

The only way to tackle this problem is together, as a community.

Let’s end the violence before another person’s life is taken and another family is destroyed.