Charleston teens discuss how curfew affected them - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Charleston teens discuss how curfew affected them

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CHARLESTON, MO (KFVS) -

After more than a week under curfew, Charleston, Missouri residents are now free to be out after 11 at night.

A curfew has been in place since three shootings, one of them deadly, in one weekend, starting on April 18.

So what kind of lasting effect is all this violence having on the youngest, most impressionable minds in Charleston?

Teenagers we spoke with on Wednesday say Charleston is home and they think people are getting the wrong impression of the town.

Several high school students said they do feel safe, but they thought the curfew was serving its purpose and keeping people off the streets at night. These teens say they just want to be able to hang out with their friends, but think the violence might make people want to move.

"I think it's bad that it's gone cause maybe all this shooting and stuff will start back since it's gone now. And maybe it'll be worse for kids to be outside," said Zakyrah Murray.

While most teens said they weren't scared to walk around in Charleston, a few voiced concern that the recent shootings have misrepresented the city and the people living there.

"That ain't right to be titled, to be labeled, for what other people done," said Shamara Murray. "Or maybe what two or three people done. That whole city getting labeled like that. I don't like that."

Charleston Police Chief Robert Hearnes said the curfew was effective and a short term solution. There were no reports of shootings while it was in place.

Now, they must work to find a more permanent way to reduce the violence. One way is community action, a locally organized group called the Cause for Christ Community Coalition is getting a lot of support for their efforts to unify the town.

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