On Tuesday, an 18-year-old boy and his father were shot and murdered as they walked out of his high school graduation in Virginia’s state capital, and authorities believe the killer knew both the father and son.
Five additional people were injured in the shooting outside the Huguenot High School graduation ceremony in Richmond, Virginia. The motivation for the homicide has not been revealed, but police confirmed on Tuesday night that they had a 19-year-old suspect in custody.
Shawn Jackson, 18, and his father, Renzo Smith, 36, have been confirmed as the victims.
The offender tried to run but was apprehended by VCU police. Amari Ty-Jon Pollard was arrested for involvement with the shooting and charged with second-degree murder. According to Richmond City Jail documents, the youngster is being detained without bail.
Individuals should have felt safe at a graduation, Interim Richmond Police Chief Rick Edwards told. It’s simply terribly sad that someone chose to bring a gun to this incident and rain fear on their community.
The incident occurred outside Richmond’s city-owned Altria Theatre, which is situated on Virginia Commonwealth University’s campus. The ceremony had been held inside the theater. When the shooting started, graduates and their families were going outside the theater to snap photos.
A school board member, Johnathan Young, said he heard 20 rounds fired in rapid succession.
According to Edwards, after the rounds were fired, the crowd exploded into “chaos.” They had hundreds of individuals in Monroe Park, so individuals scattered, the police chief said. It was a very chaotic scene at the scene.
At least 12 individuals were hospitalized for stampede-related wounds when spectators sought to leave. According to Edwards, a 9-year-old boy was struck by a vehicle but is expected to survive.
A 31-year-old man remains hospitalized with life-threatening gunshot wounds, according to the police chief, while four others — a 14-year-old male, a 32-year-old male, a 55-year-old male, and a 58-year-old male — are being treated for non-life-threatening gunshot wounds.
The shooting shook and upended the neighborhood. Kids were involved here… this is their graduation day, stated Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney. At the moment, the question that comes to mind is, is nothing sacred any longer Is there anything sacred anymore?
Jeremy Evans said that he was at the graduation ceremony with his daughter, who was singing.
He considers this situation like they’re meant to be joyful about people graduating, Evans remarked. They’re meant to be encouraging, holding, and loving one another, and then there’s a shooting. It’s simply horrible in his opinion. We must do better.
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