Chicago gangs: Real people. Real stories. A way forward. The new season of Motive explores violence on the streets of Chicago and the former gang members working to stop it.
Violence prevention work has helped former gang members like Fatz and Ceci find a purpose and a paycheck putting their past experiences to good use. But the job can be unstable and the money’s not great, and the workers have their own history of trauma they’re grappling with. They’re wading back into the center of the city’s relentless violence, but without the resources they need to really be successful.
In this episode we see a worker who negotiated peace after a triple shooting facing a potential layoff. The news hurts morale in the office that serves as a base for anti violence workers in East Garfield Park and the layoff raises concerns that the worker, who was recently released from prison, could turn back to gangs and violence himself.
Meanwhile, gunshot victim Joey struggles to get police to arrest the man he believes seriously wounded him and killed his neighbor.
And low pay makes it difficult for Ceci to support her family and do her job effectively. It weighs heavily on her mind as she is out helping families and convincing gunshot victims not to seek revenge.
About the host
Patrick Smith is a criminal justice reporter at WBEZ. He has been reporting on Chicago violence, police and the people at the center of it all for nearly a decade.