Columbia city council members Laura Nauser and Michael Trapp spoke to the Muleskinners, a local Democrat group, about Columbia violence.
Both are members of the Task Force on Community Violence.
They said the task force believes gangs are behind much of the recent violence in the city.
Nauser said, "You have people involved in criminal activity. They are working as a group. They're carrying illegal weapons, and that is their intent -- to go out and rob you or harm other people that they might have a disagreement with."
The council members said getting faith-based organizations involved, better locking of privately owned guns, and government buyback on guns are all possible solutions that the force has come up with.