ATLANTA — After a deadly shooting left a teenager dead and another in the hospital on Saturday night, Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens and other community leaders spoke at Benjamin E. Mays High School, expressing his concern and grief.
The shooting occurred at the high school overnight. Police said a 16-year-old girl was shot and killed, while a 16-year-old boy was shot and being treated at Grady Memorial Hospital.
Dickens, a graduate of Mays High School, said his former high school was the site of a tragedy the day after school let out for the summer.
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“We’re always heartbroken when anyone loses their life in our city, especially when it’s a young person. The day after school lets out. Here today we are on the campus of Mays High School, my alma mater, my neighborhood, where tragically last night, a shooting occurred,” Dickens said. “One young lady, a rising 11th grader, lost her life, and a young man, is at Grady Hospital in stable condition, from a gunshot wound. He’s also a rising junior.”
Dickens said the city and its various agencies stand with members of the community against gun violence.
“We want people to be safe in this city and to also, for our young people, who just got out for the summer, to be able to experience a fun, enjoyable, safe summer,” Dickens continued. “A lot of the members of that are focused on making sure our young people are safe, that they have opportunities, that they’re employed, empowered, engaged, that they have mentorships.”
He said he spent Sunday morning speaking to the families, and mothers of the two shooting victims.
“Those are phone calls and conversations we don’t like to have and this morning my heart goes out to both families and definitely to the family of the decedent. This young lady was full of life, and was actually expected to be working for the city of Atlanta starting on Tuesday in our summer youth employment program,” Dickens said. “So we ask for your prayers, and heart to go out to these families; my staff has been in contact with them as well as myself.”
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Sunday morning, Channel 2′s Veronica Griffin reported that 16-year-old Breasia Powell had been shot and killed from the Fulton County Medical Examiner.
Later, APD told Channel 2 Action News that a 16-year-old boy checked himself into the hospital with a gunshot wound. Police determined that it was from the same incident. His identity has not been released.
During the news conference at Mays High, the mayor highlighted the Year of the Youth initiatives the City of Atlanta is using to ensure young Atlantans have access to resources, programs, and other options to engage with opportunities for athletics, employment, art, and science.
Dr. Lisa Herring, superintendent of Atlanta Public Schools spoke briefly after, reiterating the mayor’s concerns and grieving the loss of an APS “scholar” just days after recent graduation ceremonies and the start of summer break.
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Herring said that APS was still providing resources for students and their families, particularly behavioral and mental health counseling, if needed.
Law enforcement officers from the Atlanta Police Department and the Atlanta Public Schools Police Department gave a brief update, commending the cooperation between APSPD and APD to secure campuses and make sure students and teachers were safe. The investigation remains underway, according to a representative from APD’s homicide unit.
During a brief question and answer session, detectives said they knew there were multiple shooters, but did not provide additional details, other than that the suspects were high school ages.
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