By Kim Glovas

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A 2½-day conference got underway this morning in center city Philadelphia, with the aim of addressing and preventing street violence.

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The second annual conference, with nearly 200 attendees and sponsored by the Philadelphia group “Mothers In Charge,” is titled “Law and Order or Vigilante Justice.”

Dorothy Johnson-Speight, the group’s founder and executive director, says this is a discussion with police, community groups, victims, and victims’ advocates.

One session will deal with those left behind after a senseless killing, “helping them on that journey, helping them to get from that place of pain to a place of peace and empowerment,” according to Johnson-Speight.  “We have several speakers who will talk about that.  One of the workshops will deal with how you tell your story and empower yourself, and make a difference on the issue.”

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Johnson-Speight created Mothers In Charge after her 24-year-old son was shot to death over a parking space.  That was eleven years ago.

Conferees are here from all over the nation.  Some attendees have come from Oregon, Massachusetts, and Florida.


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