Gun Control Activist Becomes Gun Violence Victim

By Shomari Stone
|  Thursday, May 16, 2013  |  Updated 8:26 AM EDT
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A man who has worked to strengthen background checks for gun buyers himself became the victim of gun violence. News4's Shomari Stone reports.

A man who has worked to strengthen background checks for gun buyers himself became the victim of gun violence. News4's Shomari Stone reports.

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Gregory Jackson Jr. believes in stronger background checks for gun buyers. He had become a leader in a group pushing President Obama's calls for gun control.

Now, Jackson is himself recovering from a gunshot wound from a stray bullet that he received four days after the bill to strengthen background checks failed in the Senate.

Jackson is the southern regional director of Organizing For Action, the non-profit created to push forward Obama's legislative agenda. Three weeks ago, Jackson and four friends were leaving his cousin's bachelor party on N Street in the Northwest section of the District. The friends heard two men down the block fighting.

They tried to get out of the way of the altercation, but the arguing men jumped into a Corvette, which sped toward Jackson. Shots were fired.

The next thing Jackson knew, he had a gunshot wound in his leg.

The injury was serious. "I will never forget hearing the doctor say, if you were here 30 minutes later, you could have lost your life," Jackson said by phone to News4's Shomari Stone.

The recovery has taken weeks, but Jackson's spirits were lifted by a personal phone call from the President.

"It was very exciting. I was a little shocked. I had worked for him for a long time," Jackson said.

Police still are investigating the shooting and have no suspects. Jackson is staying with his parents while he recovers. "I am still in a lot of pain," he said.

But he stressed that the incident had not changed his views on gun control. He supports the rights of legal gun owners -- but he wants background checks to be strengthened.

If he met the shooter, Jackson said, "I would look him in the eyes and ask him to change his ways, and look at life as much more valuable."
 

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