34 LINKEDINCOMMENTMORE

WASHINGTON (WUSA9) -- WPGC Radio silenced the music at 95.5 Wednesday night and turned up the talk on the violence plaguing teens on Prince George's County streets.

Once caller tried to explain, "It's a sad situation but that's the life we live right here, how we came up."

Seven teens have died violent, senseless deaths in the last six months. What's the answer? WUSA9 talked to Murray Malveaux, of the Take Charge Program in Forestville, MD.

Malveaux makes it his life to help teens tangling with the law or in danger of it before they make a decision that'll change or end their lives.

He points to what he says is the number one issue, "The family structure needs to be back intact, a number of our young people, have one parent, in most cases, it's the female. If the father's not around, is there an uncle? Is there an older cousin around?Especially with the males, you need that male figure."

On Wednesday night, a dozen teens graduated from the program. Malveaux says it teaches them life skills, discipline and the power of having a mentor. He says mentors can show troubled teens a better way and give them hope.

One expert explained how hope is something in scarce supply on WPGC radio, "I do believe people are at a place of hopelessness where they feel like it doesn't matter what I do, I can never get a heads up on things. So, if you get it, I'll take it from you."

Some say police need to do more.

Today, police made five arrests in the murder of 15-year-old Charles Walker Jr. The Suitland High School student was gunned down Monday for his sneakers on a Hillcrest Heights street.

Others say the schools need to do more. But Malveaux says it takes every one of us, and this wave of violence hits him in the heart.

"I was emotional about it, someone didn't realize their full potential, didn't get an opportunity to do it. We have to get the family structure back in place."

The 16-week Take Charge program costs as little as $10 a week, but Malveaux says they'll never turn away a teen who needs them.

Read or Share this story: http://on.wusa9.com/1lFshEa