Burress to promote gun violence prevention

New York Giants wide receiver Plaxico Burress (R) talks to defensive end Michael Strahan in Tempe,...

New York Giants wide receiver Plaxico Burress (R) talks to defensive end Michael Strahan in Tempe, Arizona, January 31, 2008. (REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

Sports Network

, Last Updated: 2:34 PM ET

NEW YORK - Plaxico Burress made his first public appearance since being released from prison last Monday after serving time on a weapons charge and will work to prevent gun violence.

Burress will partner with the National Urban League and the Brady Center to Prevent Gun Violence, while also working with former Colts coach Tony Dungy and basketball star Magic Johnson as mentors.

The former Giants and Steelers receiver spent 20 months in prison on a felony gun charge. He accidentally shot himself in the leg at a New York City night club on November 29, 2008 and pleaded guilty to a lesser firearms count.

"I have an opportunity to make a difference, and the National Urban League is on the front lines, creating opportunities," Burress said in a statement. "So many people have helped me along the way, and I'm grateful for the chance to do the same for other young people."

Dungy, who has also worked as a mentor to Michael Vick following his prison sentence for dogfighting charges, is eager to see Burress' progress.

"I am very excited to see Plaxico Burress becoming involved with community service and mentoring," Dungy said. "I really believe he is going to have a positive impact on many people, but especially our young people, as he focuses his efforts on helping them examine their decision making and reducing gun violence. I look forward to helping him and his family in any way I can."

Burress was released early for good behavior and is hoping to return to the NFL this season, once the labor issue is settled.

After playing his first five seasons in Pittsburgh, Burress spent four years with the Giants and helped the team win Super Bowl XLII. He caught the winning touchdown pass in New York's 17-14 upset of previously-unbeaten New England.


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