Following a shooting in Madison, community members came together in a neighborhood watch meeting to fight crime.
Gunshots rang out early Tuesday morning sparking a crime scene that spread across the community. A police officer eventually took down the alleged gunman outside a fire station.
Some community members desperate for change filled seats at the Lighthouse Gospel Church Tuesday night for the first neighborhood watch meeting for the area.
“A lot of times when we bring our clients here or perspective clients it's always something going on where we can't get upstairs or people are out here panhandling or they are outside here being very disrespectful,” said business owner Lasonya Green.
Green’s office is only steps from where shots rang out at the 333 apartments off south Gallatin pike just before 4 a.m. Tuesday.
“I see drug deals going on,” Green said. “I see prostitution. I see homeless people laying in the breezeway where they have beer bottles. We have to pick up their clothes.”
The neighborhood watch informational meeting has been planned for weeks. It just happened to take place on the same day Metro Nashville Police Officer Jason Sweeney shot Kevin Lillard. Police said he pointed a semi-automatic pistol at the officer.
“It also said hey, listen we need to do something with the neighborhood,” Marjorie Pelland said.
Pelland organized the meeting. She hoped it would be the start of neighbors working together to make the heart of Madison a safer place to work and live.
“Neighbors need to reach out to neighbors,” Pelland said. “Neighbors, if they see suspicious activity or crimes they need to pick up that phone and call the police department. That's the only way you are going to make it safer.”
Pelland said another neighborhood watch meeting was set for the early October.