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East Valley parents speak out against teen violence for the second week in a row

This comes after three teens lost their lives in recent, separate incidents
gilbert town council
Posted at 7:54 AM, Dec 13, 2023
and last updated 2023-12-13 09:54:25-05

GILBERT, AZ — For the second week in a row, East Valley parents showed up to a town council meeting to speak out against teen violence. This comes after three teenagers lost their lives in recent, separate incidents.

"This really scares me," said one parent Tuesday at the Gilbert Town Council meeting.

One by one, parents stepped up to the podium, similar to nearly a week ago during the Queen Creek Town Council meeting. Some again showed up wearing orange in honor of Preston Lord.

The 16-year-old was assaulted at a Halloween party in Queen Creek and later died. More than six weeks later, no arrests have been made in the teen's case.

Parents like Katey McPherson told ABC15 they want leaders in the Valley to step up as they push for answers and justice.

"I have to be honest, as a mom, every single day I wake up and think of Preston," said McPherson.

"Although the three recent incidents are unrelated, they have greatly impacted our respective communities," said Gilbert Police Chief Michael Soelberg.

The Gilbert police chief addressed the meeting but was unable to comment on Lord's case.

Queen Creek Police said Tuesday that there are no new updates.

Preventing violence: Talking with your teen after string of Valley teen deaths

"I think if we can all understand that it needs to be as thorough as possible, but in the interim, what are some solutions we can be working on together?" said McPherson.

Other parents also spoke out, saying their children have also been victims of violence.

"I am the face of a boy who was the victim of a jumping," said one mom at the meeting.

Those parents pushed town leaders for accountability and teamwork throughout the East Valley to keep kids safe.

McPherson told me this group will show up to as many meetings as needed.