STOCKTON (CBS13) – A controversial anti-violence program called Advance Peace was adopted by the Stockton city council Tuesday night.
“We’ll hold the rest of your questions,” said Mayor Michael Tubbs, stopping Council member Christina Fugazi’s questioning of the proposal, “I’m going to call the question first and take a vote. We have a motion, seconded. Councilman cast your votes,” Tubbs continued.
It was an abrupt vote before all council members had a chance to weigh in.
“The motion carries 6-1 councilman, Fugazi your questions,” said Tubbs returning to Fugazi’s questioning after the votes had been cast.
Before the vote, people from the community shared their differing of opinions on how Stockton should curb gun violence in the city.
“I believe that Advance Peace is something that we need to give a chance,” said one of the 38 public speakers.
“I’m upset because the community deserves better,” said another speaker.
The debate was over a program that uses intervention, mentoring, trips, and even cash incentives to stop those close to criminal activity from offending.
“We can see significant change and optimal impact,” said DeVone Boggan, the head of Advance Peace.
The proposed goal is to bring in and mentor 50 people in an effort to reduce deadly gun violence by 50 percent over four years.
“When you begin to expose people to things they didn’t know exist, it opens the spigot of what’s possible,” said Boggan.
The concept is gaining national attention as Mayor Tubbs was featured on Comedy Central’s “The Daily Show” last week.
Sacramento has also adopted the plan, but the taxpayers are paying for Advance Peace unlike Stockton, which has private sources of funding.
Not everyone is on board.
“My opinion, they don’t monitor the fellows well enough,” said Theresa Russell.
Russell is from Richmond, California where the program began. She questions the results and says Advance Peace hasn’t been studied or vetted.
“How many of them go back to criminal activity?” said Russell, “we don’t have numbers”
She and others believe money should be spent on early intervention and not on hardened criminals.
“This program needs some serious improvements,” she said.