South Memphis, TN (drugs, violence, murder)


mdmlesbear3_t220While driving home a few days ago my son asked me why there were teddy bears on the telephone poles. I knew the answer, but having to tell a nine year old child that those teddy bears were placed there because someone was killed in that location was not an easy thing to do.

I told him that those teddy bears meant that someone was killed at that spot and their friends and family placed the teddy bears there in remembrance and to show how much they loved them. It was a tribute to a loved one they lost.

So as we drove along, mind you this is the neighborhood I grew up in, we passed approximately 4 utility poles adorned with stuffed animals in a two mile radius. My son didn’t ask any further questions, but it saddened me that in just within two miles at least four people had lost their life within a year’s time.  I can accurately say that it has been within a year because I have seen the stories on the news, time and time again of murders, shootings and stabbings in this part of South Memphis. The stories below are just a fraction of what has been going on in the past year in this area

Body found burning in garbage can behind South Memphis home

Man shot in Killed in the Driveway of South Memphis Home

Clerk Shot in head at South Memphis Store

Store Clerk Shot During Robbery in South Memphis

18 Year Old Stabbed and Killed by 13 year old at South Memphis Apartment Complex

Why is this area so saturated with crime? 

I remember growing up in this neighborhood and being afraid if I heard that someone was killed, not that crime was not an issue back then, but it was definitely not as prominent as it is today.  Drugs are being sold in huge capacity and murders are taking place almost daily. It is frightening to know that people are losing their lives almost daily where I was born and raised. Drug addicts adorn almost every nook and cranny of the neighborhood and honestly the people who were fighting for a better community seem to have given up. The fight seems like a lost battle when the majority is crime, drugs and murder and the minority are the law abiding citizens who want things to be better.

I read this at the Thaddeus Matthews blog- Are Neighborhood Stores Contributing to the drug trade?

That was quite interesting to me. I had no clue those were being sold and I definitely didn’t know what they were used for, but I do know that most of the corner stores in the neighborhood have drug sells going on right at their front door. Drug dealers stand in front of the stores each and every day selling dope, and of course the store owners (mostly Iranian or Asian) know that the drugs are being sold, but nothing is done about it. Then a portion of the store owners have illegal dealings going on aside from the drugs being sold along with and outside of the guys slinging dope outside the store’s front door.

I have lived in Memphis, TN all of my life and I am appalled that we are ranked number two in the nation for violent crime; appalled but not in disbelief.  I hear the stories each and every day and many are so close to home that it makes me shiver. I remember watching the show The First 48  and seeing the Memphis episodes and shaking my head because there is so much murder and sadness. Then when the Lester Street Murders happened I was so shaken that it took me a while to realize that it was real. Six people including two children had indeed been murdered in my hometown. It was such a horrible event but even with that tragedy still fresh in our minds murders, robberies and every other act of violence were still taking place as if this mass murder had not just taken place. This city has taken a violent and destructive turn, one in which I cannot explain and have no answer to how things can change. When will the violence end?

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  1. @ the comment by “Keith Proctor”

    First I would like to ask a question. Which black democrats in Memphis encourage abortion, welfare and blaming the white man. I am unaware of and have not seen or heard that from any of them, or from any politicians in Memphis…so for that point in your comment I am completely lost as to where you gathered that opinion.

    Also you state that the democratic party make every black person out to be a victim and not responsible for any crime. But how does a political party do any of that? How can they be held responsible for people committing crimes?

    Maybe you don’t watch the news, but there are plenty of black ppl on it daily for committing crimes, so they are indeed being held responsible for the crimes they committ.

    And with the comments you make about religion, morals and the ten commandments you state these things as if black ppl are the only ones committing crimes and participating in immoral behavior. There are plenty of white ppl living the same lifestyle as black people. but I am sure you are very aware of that.

    • bbe4eva
    • April 16th, 2009

    u kno i kno how ya feel,we from tha same beautiful hood.i can remember when all tha houses that are burned or torn apart cuz they now crack houses were nice homes 4 families.so it dows hurt 2 ride thru south memphis and see all tha vacant lots and stuff.i hate 2 see wut our hood had become.as far as tha violence is concearned,its mostly on tha parents.i say that because we came from tha same place and look at us,its part parrent and part child,i kno tha child has tha final say if they wanna do tha wrong thing but if u have a loving parent or parents present,u might not do bad thiings so quickly. much luv hun and im out!

    • Keith Proctor
    • April 16th, 2009

    I am a white man from Frayser. I am a prolife conservative Christian. I feel that the black Democrat party in Memphis is racist and contributes to the crime problem by encouraging abortion,get on welfare,don’t get married and blame the white man. The Democrat party runs Memphis from the schools to the government. They hate Republicans and conservative Christians. They are against the death penalty which I believe needs to be used to kill off people like the Lester Street murderer. However, they make every black person to be a victim and not responsible for any crime. Black people need to read the Bible about loving their neighbor and follow the 10 commandments and get married. Please stop voting and supporting these pro abortion Democrats like Congressman Steve Cohen and President Barak Hussein Obama.

    • dgrantlen
    • March 12th, 2009

    The CBS correspondent also did not seem to pick up on the possible link between Chicago’s gun ban and the high level of crime in the city: “Chicago, which passed a gun ban similar to D.C.’s 25 years ago, had 325 gun homicides last year — a 10-year-old shot in the head, a pregnant woman gunned down, a college student shot and killed. Mayor Daley said the Court’s decision will make his mean streets even more dangerous. … According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, 30,000 Americans die from gun violence each year — some 80 a day — 321 killed by guns in Philadelphia last year; 114 in Oakland, California; 316 in Los Angeles. The solution seems to be death and destruction, which is happening from the inside out. Once the leadership sees that it will soon destroy them and their greed for money power maybe we won’t see street altars, which is something that is ignored by most Urban City leaders you know police and mayors and those in power. How many more children are going to die before the import of this poison stops. This is the generation of the Skull and Cross Bones which means poison and death. Wake up Preachers

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