Small business owners gather to talk curbing crime

POSTED: Tuesday, July 24, 2012 - 10:30pm

UPDATED: Tuesday, July 24, 2012 - 10:34pm

"This is our community we're not here just because we are small business people protecting our business," said Bob Breaux with the Chamber of Commerce of East Baton Rouge. "We are here protecting the community that we live in that we work in."

Members of the Chamber of Commerce of East Baton Rouge gathered together to take a closer look at the culture of crime in the community. East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff Sid Gautreaux says the most bullets start flying when street creditably is challenged.

"He's disrespecting you," said Sheriff Gautreaux. "You go get your gun. They call it flopping, killing."

The sheriff says a lack of education and or addiction to drugs and alcohol are two big reasons people turn to crime.

"The average perpetrator of a homicide in East Baton Rouge is between 17 and 28 years old black male, and the average victim of a homicide is the same thing," said Sheriff Gautreaux.

The sheriff says if the community and law enforcement don't work together to curb crime business in the parish will start to suffer.

"When you look at some business that wants to start in East Baton Rouge Parish," said Sheriff Gautreaux. "What is the two biggest factors that they look at: crime and education. "

"That's economic development," said Breaux. "You know, if we are going to be small business owners we need to feel good about ourselves. We need to feel good about the community. "

Bob Breaux with the chamber says his group wants to help turn things around.

"Small bushiness's have to be involved in the community," said Breaux. "We can't just sit back and think of all the different problems and complain about it. We have to take action."

The sheriff went on to say there are easy ways to help fight crime. First, help mentor kids. Second, donate time or money to community outreach programs.

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