“SNITCH” initiative works to make Lansing community safer

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LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Tips from the community play a key role in helping to solve crimes, but the Lansing police say many people refuse to come forward.

A couple groups are working to take a word considered negative and turn it into something positive.

The word is “snitch” and while some people might find it controversial, others here in Lansing are working to change that.

“Say something when something is wrong in the community, whether you are 3-years-old all the way up to 83-years-old,” said Michael McKissic, the founder of the Mikey 23 Foundation.

S.N.I.T.C.H. or “Strong Neighbors Involved Together Creating Hope.”

That’s the message Michael McKissic and the Lansing Police Department are trying to get across.

Michael’s son Mikey was shot and killed in Lansing in 2015.

“Everybody knows that my son’s case is unsolved only because nobody would say anything about it, so we started this program to help the kids, so if you see something, report it,” said McKissic.

“I just think a lot of people look up to me, so if I do it, they will,” said Eric James.

“Cause you can help save a family, you can help save a life, you know, we need to stop all the negativity in the world,” said Charve Chappell.

James and Chappell say while they know some people their age view the word “snitch” negatively, they’re willing to look past that in hopes of making a difference.

“We’re friends with his daughter, so we know how she feels, you know, we just like to be a helping hand,” said Chappell.

“What we’re trying to do is mentor them and let them know we care about you and we love you, and so we want to start them off at a early age and get rid of that derogatory word snitch and bring it to something positive,” said McKissic. “We’re trying to get everyone together. As that old saying, that African proverb, ‘It takes a village to raise a child.'”

If you’d like to learn more about where to purchase a S.N.I.T.C.H. sweatshirt, click here.

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