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      Dr. Hope to City: Crime needs to stop on Highland Ave.

      One woman tonight wants something to be done about the crime in her neighborhood.

      She proposed a plan to the City Commission Tuesday.

      The 700 through 900 blocks of Highland Avenue should prepare to come under attack by Dr. Gwendolyn Hope. She faced the City Commission Tuesday with a purpose.

      We intend to take our community back and we want to feel safe in the good life city, said Hope.

      Hope went to police weeks ago, complaining of open prostitution, open drug sales and thefts going on along Highland Avenue. Chief John Proctor did some research and agrees, saying the environment fosters criminal activity--especially with the Heritage House nearby.

      You have a lot of depressed properties there that they take advantage of, says Chief Proctor.

      The most recent victim--Hope's church, the Center Of Refuge that she is currently bishop of. Two air conditioning units were vandalized.

      Bishop Hope says they spent $10,000 on the ac units as well as this barbed wire across the top of the fence for security, but that didn't stop thieves from breaking in and the padlock they spent $200 on is missing.

      The officers cannot do it by themselves and neither can we the community do it by ourselves, but we're gonna have to work together, says Hope.

      Hope proposed uniting with the city. Asking them to create a summer youth employment program. She also wants local businesses to create 5,000 jobs for youth ages 14 to 21.

      I certainly think it's something that would help, don't know how to fund it, don't see the resources there presently. Maybe there are some things we can cut and take some things here and there, says City Manager James Taylor.

      Chief Proctor says they are working on a plan of action, saying they need something more than just arresting these youth and then releasing them on the street again.