Pastor sleeping in tent for a month to raise awareness about crime

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (September 4, 2015)- A local pastor has had it with crime, so he’s camping out.

Rev. John Girton has pledged to sleep in a tent for the next month in one of the most dangerous parts of the city.

“We looked at a map and we were like there’s issues everywhere I mean, how do we bring attention to this because it’s just everywhere? We decided that we don’t have to go far,” explains Rev. John Girton, with Christ Missionary Baptist Church.

Rev. Girton pitched his tent at the corner of 30th and Martin Luther King Jr. Drive on the near north side.  The intersection is in one of the areas IMPD has labeled as a target zone.  Just a couple weeks ago, a 16-year-old was shot and killed by another 16-year-old.

“There are more than just individual victims. There are families there are children, mothers and grandmothers and grandfathers and fathers and cousins that are left behind to deal with the trauma,” explains Rev. Girton.

Rev. Girton has seen enough violence and enough victims so he and his church formed a movement called United For Change.

He’s asking anyone to stop by his tent in the next month and share their stories with him.

“These people have dignity, ideas, they have creativity,” says Rev. Girton.

The community has a lot of heart, they just need some hope.

Rev. Girton told us he’s not worried at all about sleeping outside in the neighborhood.  Just as a precaution, there will be extra IMPD officers patrolling the area for the next month while Rev. Girton is there.


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