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Jacksonville Commemorates Victims' Rights Week

Kevin Meerschaert

With family members of crime victims holding photos of their missing and murdered loved ones standing nearby, Mayor Alvin Brown and others gathered at City Hall on Monday to commemorate the 30th annual National Crime Victims' Rights Week.The week commemorates the anniversary of the passage of the 1984 federal Crime Victims' Rights Act.    Justice Coalition Executive Director Anne Dugger said this year's national theme is "Restoring the Balance of Justice." She said the coalition will continue to shine light on the needs of crime victims and their families.

State Attorney Angela Corey told crime victims she will continue to aggressively prosecute law breakers.

"As long as I'm the State Attorney, we're never going to stop working with law enforcement to fight for these people and for everybody in this community because when we fight for our victims we're fighting to make this a better community," she said.

Also addressing the crowd was Ron Davis, father of slain teenager Jordan Davis. An emotional Davis expressed the tragedy of learning about his son's death.

"What happens to you is you're stunned," he said. "You sit on your couch and you cannot believe its happening to you, but it is."

"So you need people along the way to help you. To guide you through this."

Jordan Davis was fatally shot in November 2012 by Brevard County software engineer Michael Dunn while parked at a gas station with three friends. Dunn was convicted on three counts of second-degree attempted murder, but the murder charge for the killing of Davis was declared a mistrial.    

This year's Victims' Rights Week in Jacksonville will includes a resource fair and awards luncheon on Tuesday at the Main Library downtown. There is also a candlelight vigil Thursday evening at 6 p.m. to remember those lost to crime at Friendship Fountain.   

You can follow Kevin Meerschaert on Twitter @KMeerschaertJax.

Kevin Meerschaert has left WJCT for new pursuits. He was the producer of First Coast Connect until October of 2018.