FOX 66 News at Ten
A glimpse inside the world of crime, in one of the most violent cities in the nation. Three men who know first-hand the dangers these streets bring, have returned to their city, hoping to keep others from walking their same path.
Some may argue the city of Flint lies in ruins. The days of flourishing and bustling neighborhoods have disappeared and the violence that has taken over gives the city a black eye.
"It's a damper on the community, but we have to build it back up and put it back to where it's been," says city resident Glam Diva.
Is Flint a lost cause? Or is there a glimmer of light through the darkness?
Meet Timothy Abdul-Matin, Leon El-Alamin, and Roy Fields. Three self-proclaimed former street thugs. They were once a part of the problem here. Now they're fighting the front lines for the solution.
They've created the 3 R's organization, which stands for reform, refine, and rebuild.
They're tackling some of the biggest issues in urban America, violence and crime by using their street knowledge and combined 25 years behind bars to nip the problem.
Leon El-Alamin, formerly Leon Wilson used to fight for what he calls "street fame."
He has the wounds to prove it.
The former street hustler was shot in the head by a couple of guys he thought were his friends, once he finally earned that fame.
He would go on to spend 9 years in prison for gun and drug charges.
"When you're desperate, it'll lead you to do anything, and that's what I think it is," says El-Alamin.
Timothy Abdul-Matin, formerly known as Timothy Miller, also fell into a life of crime.
He spent 10 years behind bars for gun charges and an armed robbery.
While locked up, his mother, grandmother, grandfather and many other family members passed away.
"If you live in the wrong environment, you're going to ultimately adapt to your environment, it's all about adapting and adjusting, whether it's wrong or right, these are the things that's going on, it's just going to happen," says Abdul-Matin.
Roy Fields was a stand-out football player in high school, earning a scholarship to play at Northwood University. But he got mixed up with guns and drugs and ended up in the slammer for six years.
Now back in their community, they insist they're devoted to serving it, using their lives to keep others on the straight and narrow.
So, how can former criminals be so dedicated to solving our crime problem?
"The psychological build of a person now a days is so far gone, it just isn't right, and it ties into the things we see around our neighborhood. It is always going to be hard, but you've got to give yourself that opportunity, and that's 3 R's," says Fields.
Copyright 2013 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
Friday, November 8 2013, 09:32 AM EST
National News Headlines
|Indiana man gets four-year sentence for stealing brains from museum, selling them|
|An Indiana man who admitted stealing human brain samples and other tissue from a medical museum and selling them received a four-year jail sentence Wednesday.|
|Los Angeles authorities arrest homeless man with cache of firearms|
|Los Angeles County authorities arrested a homeless man Wednesday who had five firearms, including two operable World War II-era machine guns.|
|Texas authorities recover possible remains of missing girl, 25 years after her disappearance|
|Texas authorities have uncovered the possible remains of a 15-year-old girl who was missing for 25 years, after they family of a suspect in her death came forward with a tip, sheriff’s officials said Wednesday.|
|Mother who left newborn baby in NYC manger won't face charges|
|A mother who left her newborn baby in a Christmas manger inside a New York City church will not be prosecuted, authorities said Wednesday.|
|Protesters to target Chicago shopping area on Black Friday after video of cop shooting black teen released|
|Small groups of demonstrators gathered again Wednesday to protest the death of a black teen shot by a white police officer, and they urged supporters to join them in trying to shut down Chicago's famous Michigan Avenue shopping district during the Black Friday shopping bonanza.|
|Uncle: Girl, 12, doing OK 2 days after shooting that killed her parents, brother at Ohio home|
|The uncle of a 12-year-old Ohio girl wounded in a shooting that killed her parents and 7-year-old brother says she could be released from the hospital soon.|
|Ex-boxing champion O'Neil Bell fatally shot, Atlanta police say|
|Police say a former boxing champion has been shot to death during a robbery in Atlanta.|
|Appeals court rules EPA administrator doesn't have to give deposition in coal company lawsuit|
|A federal appeals court says U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy doesn't have to give a deposition in a coal company's lawsuit over the impact of regulations on jobs.|
|Historic cruise ship gets $600,000 lifeline as preservationists save it from scrapyard|
|A historic cruise ship that once carried princes and presidents has gotten a $600,000 lifeline that will save it from the scrap heap, for now.|
|Millions of Americans begin Thanksgiving holiday amid ramped up security, terrorism fears|
|Millions of Americans started their Thanksgiving getaway Wednesday by taking to the roads and airport security lines, undaunted by terrorism fears as officials continue to stress there are no “credible” threats in the wake of the Paris terror attacks earlier this month.|