“We’ve had stabbings, we’ve had shootings, all involving juveniles and that’s very concerning,” Medford Police Lieutenant Mike Budreau says gangs exist in Medford, and they have for years, “The gang activity here has really ebbed and flowed over the years, there’s been times where it’s really bad, and there’s been times where it’s really good.”
Lieutenant Budreau says right now, it’s thankfully the latter. Several organizations want to keep it that way.
“If we put something positive in that neighborhood, that fire station would be a great location,” Troy Wohosky of Spartan Boxing says.
The Jackson County Gang Prevention Task Force is eyeing the old Fire Station 2 on W 8th street, as a potential location for a community center. 5 non-profits have already said they’d play a part in transforming the location into a positive place for at-risk youth.
Including Spartan Boxing. Its executive director says it could have a positive impact.
“Help build morals, and a healthy lifestyle,” Wohosky says, “people think boxing is just hitting, but it’s more than that. It’s discipline, commitment.”
Familia Unida Car and Bike Club has also gotten on-board.
“We teach kids how to build low-rider bikes,” Rico Gutierrez says.
For Gutierrez, making this dream a reality, is a cause that hits close to home. A former gang member, he now uses his experience to positively influence area youth, and the idea of expanding that reach is exciting.
“I’m a strong believer if there’s nothing for these kids to do, they will find something to do and a lot of the times it’s something negative. So if we put something positive in front of them, I’m sure they’ll grab it,” Gutierrez says
Rogue Valley Youth for Christ is spearheading the proposal, and hoping to work with the city to make it a reality. NBC5 reached out to the city to see if there are any upcoming agenda items relating to the future of the old fire station. We were told nothing is scheduled at this point.
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