Ok! At first I was going to call this post: American Gun Violence-The First 60 days of 2014. But after looking over the victims and suspects of the Gun Violence that I have listed? There’s only one word that keeps coming to my mind: Holocaust. Among the victims of Gun Violence in the First 60 days of 2014 are a 17-year-old Providence, R.I. High School Football player, a 5-year-old Omaha, Nebraska little girl eating a bowl of cereal. Both hit by stray bullets. There’s 4 college students on the list.The students were all in their early, early twenties. They are students from Michigan State, Purdue, South Carolina State, and Virginia Union. Two from the Big 10 and two Historic Black College Universities. There’s 5 twenty year old victims in all. The 5th was an innocent girl stocking shelves at a Grocery Store in Elkhart, Indiana for a company called Martins by a 23-year-old. Who also shot an innocent 44-year-old Grocery store shopper at the wrong place wrong time. Two teenagers were killed coming from a Boys and Girls Club in Oakland. One victim was 13 years old and the other was 15 years of age. There’s are 6 teenagers on the list. A surprising number of the suspects are young black teenagers. Two of the victims had not reached the first decade in their lives. One was the little girl from Omaha and the second was a 9 year-old from the Mattapan section of Boston, Mass. The 9 year-old was shot by his 14 year-old brother on a Friday afternoon at around 11:30. And no it wasn’t Good Friday. All the victims in this post were killed by Gun Violence. Where does a teenager get a GUN? Can someone explain that to me? And why in the greatest country in the world? Are so many young people so willing to throw their lives and their peers lives away over a Gun and Senseless Gun Violence?
Lee Weathersby 13 and Lamar Broussard on New Years Day and January 19th:
Channel 2 WTVU on Lee Weathersby 13 shot on New Years Eve.:
“The last phone call I got from him was 5:47 p.m. He said ‘Mom, I’m on my way home. I’m going to stop at the taco truck and get me a burrito’,” New said.
Police found Lee less than a mile from his home about 9:30 p.m. Tuesday. He was at the corner of 104th Avenue and Walnut Street. The boy was bleeding from multiple gunshot wounds.
The family said witnesses told them Lee was with two other boys, when a dark four door car pulled up and two young men jumped out and fired shots. The family says witnesses saw Lee’s two friends ran away and the car left the scene.
Lee died at the hospital at 4:42 Wednesday morning.
Then, three days after Lee’s funeral, on January 19, she asked Lamar to run an errand for her, to pay her cell phone bill. He was two blocks from home when friends started calling her phone.
There had been gunfire in the neighborhood, they told her.
New ran towards the corner, and spotted the yellow police tape.
“I see my son’s car shot up. And I just broke down crying.” She couldn’t approach the car. She could see from 20 yards away what had happened.
“The suspect stood on top of the car and just shot into the car. Just shot into the car.”
She called Lamar repeatedly from her cell phone. “He never answered. He never answered.” There was no logic in it, she says, because she already knew in her heart that Lamar was gone.
Thomas Benjamin, an Atlantic City resident who knew Mercado-Santiago, said, “Only 13…like when does stuff like that happen?” “You know, a 13-year-old kid who didn’t even make it to high school – it’s not a good thing when children can’t feel safe just walking home from school,” said Councilman Marty Small.
Residents who live in the area say an argument amongst the teens started in the Cedar Food Market VIII and then spread into the street outside. Johnson explained, “We were on the 2nd story, so the windows were open, and we heard arguing going on over there at the store on the other side of this building. We heard arguing and screaming and then we heard five to six successive gunshots and then we looked out to see if we could see what that was going on and we just see 20 to 30 kids running down Pennsylvania Avenue and back there behind the church.”
Atlantic City police say that another student was shot in the leg during the incident. Benjamin told NBC40, “To hear it was Angel and a couple of other kids, somebody got shot in the leg, and whoever did the shooting – I don’t know what happened to him. It’s nerve-racking….especially when you know him, it kind of racks your nerves.”
On the morning of January 15th, Omaha 5 year-old Payton Benson was hit by a stray bullet while eating her morning bowl of cereal. Payton’s 4 year-old brother watched as Payton was hit while eating cereal.
20 year-old Vincent Hicks is accused of shooting Payton Benson.
On Wednesday morning January 15, Omaha 5 year old Payton Benson was shot. But Wednesday night in a small town in Indiana called Elkhart. 22 year old Shawn Bair was about to go on a shooting spree in a Martin’s Grocery Store. There 20 year-old Krystle Dike was stocking shelves. 44 year-old Rachelle Godfread was shopping. Neither ladies knew the shooter.
WGNChicago on the Elkhart, Indiana Martins Grocery Store Shooting:
Police say Bair pulled out a .44 caliber semi-automatic handgun, and shot and killed 20-year-old Krystal Dikes. Police say she had just started working at the store stocking the shelves. Friends say she was a caring, compassionate person.
“I don’t know what his goal was, I don’t know what his aim was, mad at the world. There’s definitely a family grieving for her. Definitely. And lots of friends,” said Dikes’ boyfriend Kyle Barnett.
After firing at another employee and missing, police say Bair shot and killed his second victim, 44-year-old Rachelle Godfread, who was there along with about 15 others shopping.
On January 18, a little after midnight Rocky Mount, N.C. 15 year old Brian Tyrik Freeman was shot in a drive-by.
WTVD Raliegh ABC 11 on Brian Tyrik Freeman:
Although Freeman was hit, his friend was able to run for cover. Freeman’s aunt says the teen was too upset to march with the family.
“He’s not doing well at all, he feels like he let Brian down because Brian got hit, and to avoid the bullets he had to keep going. He’s having a really hard time,” said Gloria Deans.
Family members say the violence is nothing new in Rocky Mount and that random gunshots rang out in the same neighborhood just a month ago. The victim’s older cousins hope the community learns from their pain.
“Kids, young, shouldn’t have to worry about those type of things when they’re walking home,” said Robert Freeman.
“You just never imagine them going before you,” added Brandis Freeman.
On January 21st, Purdue Engineering Student Andrew Boldt 21 was shot at Purdue’s electrical engineering building.
Heavy.com on Purdue University’s Andrew Boldt:
Boldt was a TA for the ECE 362 Lab — a microprocessor system design and interfacing class — and was scheduled, along with his partner, to work from 11:30 a.m. to 2:20 p.m. The shooting occurred during that class, just before noon in Purdue’s electrical engineering building. Police believe he was individually targeted and that the shooter, whose identity was also initially withheld, was a student. It is now being reported that the shooter is engineering student Cody Cousins.