Freeman escapes gun violence


Nickolas Castillo, reporter

Berri Freeman moved to Hawaii in August 2018 to avoid gun violence. She is from the West Side of Chicago, the most dangerous part of the city. Gangs are a problem.

“Growing up in Chicago is hard, as far as violence. But I had both parents in my life so it wasn’t that hard for me. We didn’t struggle as a lot of people did, but just the violence,” she said. ”That was the very hard part.”

Freeman said Chicago and Hawaii are very different. She feels safer here, but worries when she hears about any violence.

“I think it’s sad that it’s spreading to a place that’s supposed to be peaceful and it’s very known to be safe and not have as many shootings. It’s not a lot yet, so I really think they could stop it before it turns into a lot,” she said.

Freeman does miss Chicago since her family and the friends she grew up with are still there, but she said she doesn’t miss the violence and won’t move back. When Freeman first moved to Hawaii she didn’t like it.

“All last year, I hated it so bad,” she said. “But then I went back home for the summer, and seeing how stuff was and I was realizing ‘I don’t want to be here anymore, it’s too dangerous.’ So, it made me appreciate Hawaii a little bit more than when I first came.”