New subcommittee works to stop crime at the local level

New subcommittee works to stop crime at the local level

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – A new subcommittee reporting to Horry County's Public Safety Committee is dedicating itself to bettering the quality of life in every Horry County community.

A group of people, including chairman and council member Jimmy Washington, is dedicated to seeking out information from the local level.

One member can't seem to shake some of the things he has seen right here in Horry County.

"Some kids drove by in a car, shooting out of the window, as children were playing in the street. Any of those children could have been killed. I said to myself and I've sad to others, 'Enough is enough,'" said Bennie Swans, a community activist.

Swans is a member of the new subcommittee aimed at bettering the quality of life for all families in Horry County.

"I've never met a parent that didn't want better for their children then they have for themselves. They may not know how, they may not be able to retrieve the resources needed, but they have the love, the care and the concern for their children," said Swans.

Swans added now is the time to bring those resources into the community, and it all starts with a conversation.

"What we thought would be important is to have public hearings, to look at the issues of crime as it relates to middle class residential areas and to low income communities. Crime impacts everyone. We can capture that low-hanging fruit, the thoughts, the ideas, the concerns of local parents as they try to improve the life of their children," Swans explained.

Swans said the subcommittee is focusing on all aspects and all levels of crime, from gangs who operate on turf to those who operate with drugs, drug addiction, burglary, armed robbery and gun violence.

Swans felt each of these can relate to the other. Now, it's all about preventing the cycle from starting.

"We don't want a kindergarten to prison pipe line. We want to change that equation and by everyone working together, I'm absolutely certain, we can make that happen, Swans said.

The next meeting is April 12 at 5:30 p.m. at the M.L. Brown Public Safety building. At that time, the subcommittee will work on its mission statement, a timeline for public hearings and discuss the resources available in Horry County.

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