Little spoke to the Health and Human Services Appropriations Committee. Around 400 people attended the session in addition to the committee.
He spoke on behalf of Sheriff Steve Bunn, who is an executive committee member of N.C. Fight Crime-Invest In Kids. The N.C. chapter of the group has around 150 members.
More than 1,500 law officers, prosecutors and victims are members of the national organization.
Calling public safety "the government's most fundamental responsibility," Little said the key to fighting crime is prevention.
"We'll never be able to arrest, try and imprison our way out of the crime problem," he said. "But we can save lives, hardship-and money-by investing in programs that keep children from growing up to be criminals in the first place."
Little explained that N.C. Fight Crime-Invest In Kids has proven that programs such as after school programs, educational child care programs, child abuse and neglect prevention programs and efforts to retrieve troubled kids work.
The Health and Human Services Appropriations Committee is co-chaired by Rep. Edd Nye of Elizabethtown.