The Office of Eastern Judicial Circuit/Chatham County District Attorney Larry Chisolm announced today the start of a new hospital based violence intervention program. This exciting new program will be housed at Memorial Medical Center and will be called: VIP.
The Violence Intervention Program (VIP) is the first of its kind in the Southeast. VIP is an extension of the Victim-Witness Assistance Program (VWAP) and a part of DA Larry Chisolm’s overall vision for the DA’s Office, which includes improving the quality of public services for residents of Chatham County and being more aggressive and proactive in the fight against violent crime. The model for this program was based on models from California, Baltimore, and Philadelphia.
VIP will be a community focused program designed to reduce violence among youth ages 12-30. The program is a partnership between the District Attorney’s Office and Memorial University Medical Center (MUMC) and will be poised to serve crime victims after they are released from the Emergency Department. Kesha Gibson- Carter has joined the District Attorney’s Office as the organization’s first Violence Intervention Coordinator.
Gibson-Carter will lead the implementation of the Violence Intervention Program. She will also supervise the Investigator and Intervention Specialist.
Gibson-Carter received her Master’s in Public Administration from Savannah State University and her Bachelor’s in Criminal Justice from Fort Valley State University.
Out of an applicant pool of over a hundred twenty candidates, Christopher Brown was chosen to serve as the first Intervention Specialist. The specialist is a case management position that coordinates home visits and wrap-around services for each victim. Brown will be responsible for linking the victim and his or her family with local resources that meet participants’ basic needs and promote healthy, nonviolent lifestyles. Brown is a recent graduate of the Masters Program from the Jiann-Ping Hsu College of Public Health at Georgia Southern University. He also brings with him a rich background in mentoring as the Director of the Pathways-To- Success Program at Georgia Southern and with trauma and emergency patient care at the East Georgia Regional Hospital and with both the Tatnall and Emanuel County Emergency Medical Services.
Jonathan Drummond, a young police officer with the Savannah-Chatham Metro Police Department has been hired as the first criminal investigator. He comes from a long line of crime fighters in that his father and brother are both law enforcement officers with SCMPD. He is two semesters away from completing his Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from Armstrong Atlantic State University.
Gibson-Carter, Brown and Drummond will all be headquartered at Memorial University Medical Center, to work with victims of violent crime as they come into the Emergency Department.
If you are interested in volunteering for the VIP program, please contact our Victim-Witness Assistance office at 912.652.7329