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Oakland youth soccer group strikes recreation to Santa Rosa for safer setting

SANTA ROSA, Calif. (KRON) — Oakland’s East Bay Panthers youth soccer group is in search of someplace new to follow after the group skilled two shootings in lower than per week at Verdese Carter Park. On Saturday, they moved their recreation from Oakland to Santa Rosa to make sure everybody can be protected.

Mother and father of those children say there are numerous unhealthy issues occurring in Oakland. However, a soccer group like this retains their children from getting concerned in hassle. Nevertheless, after two shootings in such a short while, many children and households wish to stop as a result of they’re afraid to take part.

“Simply to see the youngsters operating for his or her lives and simply scrambling not understanding the place to go and on the bottom and operating behind vehicles. It was very scary,” mentioned one mum or dad.

A follow reduce quick twice by shootings.

The East Bay Panthers soccer and cheer group used to follow at Verdese Carter Park close to 98th and Bancroft Avenue in Oakland. However they don’t really feel protected there anymore.

The primary capturing occurred on Thursday, Aug. 24. Mum or dad Tamu Lopez says it gave the impression of dozens of photographs rang out. Then it occurred once more on Tuesday, Aug. 29.

“One in every of our children had a bullet that was proper subsequent to him that landed,” Lopez mentioned. “Lots of our children and households are traumatized by what occurred.”

Head coach Luke Renfroe says a number of kids have stop the group within the days because the shootings, and plenty of extra are nonetheless feeling the consequences.

“A few of them have nightmares, and PTSD is actual,” Renfroe mentioned. “Oakland has changed into a mini-war zone lately. I want there was one thing extra that may very well be executed, however we’re simply making an attempt to maintain our children protected.”

The group bussed the children greater than 60 miles away to Santa Rosa on Saturday. It was purported to be a house recreation, however they determined to journey to their opponent as a substitute. Board member and mum or dad Candisha Scott says they don’t really feel protected holding the video games wherever in Oakland.

“I’m hoping that we deliver consciousness that folks want to know that our youth are in peril, and it’s very impactful when our youth don’t really feel protected,” Scott mentioned.

Oakland police say they’re actively investigating each of the shootings.

Lopez says they’re making an attempt to maintain the group collectively whereas they search for a brand new, safer location to follow and play video games. She says the children want one of these group.

“As a result of they’re from Oakland doesn’t imply they must do the detrimental issues from Oakland,” Lopez mentioned. “So this our means of giving again and letting them that they’re going to be nice student-athletes, and we anticipate for them to be upstanding individuals”

The East Bay Panthers are a non-profit group. Organizers say they’re making an attempt to boost cash to place in the direction of paying for safer follow areas.

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