PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia City Council members and police are taking a stand after an anti-violence activist’s home was firebombed. Burns mark the front of Sonja Brigham’s home at East Madison and Jasper Streets where Philadelphia police say an attempted arson happened Wednesday.
The home belongs to Brigham, a block captain who has been fighting against suspected drug dealing in the community.
She was not home at the time, but her son was.
“When someone threatens your kids, when someone threatens your family, all bets are off,” Brigham said. “You feel like if that’s what we’re gonna do, let’s do it. I came home from work and sat on the corner and was like, ‘I’m right here. You want me, I’m right here.'”
“I would say, yeah,” Brigham said when asked if she thought her home was targeted. “I saw them come up, I saw them steal my camera and then I saw them pour the liquid on it and light it on fire. Yeah, my house was targeted!”
People gathered Friday evening to show their support and frustration over what is being called a targeted attack.
“This is intolerable,” Councilmember Maria Quiñones Sánchez said. “And we want the mayor to be just as outraged. Drug dealers will not take over these streets.”
Councilmember Mark Squilla told CBS3 protecting those who want to improve the community should be a top priority for everyone.
“When we’re in a neighborhood and we have people out there protecting our communities, working with the city to try to make it better, we know we have to protect them and we have to stand with them,” he said.
Brigham said this terrifying incident won’t stop her work.
“They don’t want the neighborhood to be wonderful and to become a place of pride for the residents. But we’re not gonna stop,” she said.