PORTLAND, Ore. (KPTV) - "I want to feel safe."
A 9-year-old girl who addressed the Portland City Council Wednesday morning shared her own harrowing experience with gun violence in the city.
It happened in July when she, her 12-year-old brother and their dad were playing "imaginary baseball" at Rose City Park. The child, Hadar Kedem, told Mayor Ted Wheeler and city commissioners that a group of people walked into the park near where they were - and that's when bullets started flying.
She said she didn't grab her shoes and instead ran barefoot with her family to safety. Wednesday, she asked Wheeler and the rest of the council to do something about it.
PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) - The Portland Police Association has launched a billboard campaign to raise awareness on public safety concerns as the ci…
"I wanted to share this story with you because I want there to be change, and I know that not only I want change, but everyone wants change," she said. "I want to feel safe, and I don't want to be suspecting that everyone is bad or a criminal. And I don't want any other gun violence incidents to happen in Portland or anywhere in the country."
Wheeler called Hadar "a brave young woman" and said he and the commissioners are acting "with urgency" to reduce gun violence. Wheeler did not give specifics on what actions the city is taking.
The child's testimony came a day after Portland police responded to seven shootings in a 15-hour period. The city has recorded more than 840 shootings this year, the most it has seen in more than 25 years. There have also been 60 homicides this year.