by: Jason Kelly, Roy Ramos Updated:
ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. - A series of 12 billboards went up Friday throughout Orange County's Pine Hills neighborhood.
The signs will showcase six recent murder victims and District 6 Commissioner Victoria Siplin, whose district includes Pine Hills.
The campaign, dubbed "Take Back District 6," is intended to raise awareness of the gun violence that has plagued the neighborhood in recent months.
Among the victims featured is Sade Dixon, the slain pregnant ex-girlfriend of murder suspect Markeith Loyd.
He was accused of fatally shooting Dixon and wounding her brother at their Pine Hills home in December.
Loyd is also accused of fatally shooting Orlando police Lt. Debra Clayton at a Pine Hills Walmart in January.
The billboard shows Dixon’s family holding a picture of her.
Her mother, Stephanie Dixon-Daniels, said finding her daughter’s alleged killer brought relief, but also frustration.
“It seems like this generation doesn’t seem to understand how valuable a life is,” said Dixon-Daniels.
She’s hopeful the billboards will end a culture of witnesses not speaking to law enforcement.
“When it hits your house, you’re going to want everybody to tell, so we want you to speak up,” she said.
For months, Orange County leaders have talked about ways to reduce crime in the Pine Hills area.
“How can we partner to give a message out to the community that if you see something, say something?” said Siplin.
By Friday, Siplin said nearly a dozen billboards will go up featuring local families like Dixon’s.
Siplin hopes the billboard will spark leads in unsolved murders, like that of Jeffrey Webb.
The idea comes from Commissioner Victoria Siplin. A dozen of these billboards will be put up and features families of murder victims. #WFTV— Cuthbert Langley (@CLangleyWFTV) February 16, 2017
Webb was shot and killed outside a business when a man walked up with a long gun and fired dozens of rounds.
Siplin believes the billboard will let families of victims know that they have the support of the community.
The billboard will be put up throughout the area over the next several months.
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