SOUTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, FLA. (WSVN) - A concerned South Florida community is taking steps to help put an end to gun violence, days after, police said, six young people were injured in a drive-by shooting that took place during a birthday party in Southwest Miami-Dade.
Investigators said the victims, between the ages of 12 and 17, all sustained gunshot wounds.
Miami-Dade Police and Fire Rescue responded to the scene of the shooting near Southwest 206th Street and 119th Avenue, Saturday, at around 10:45 p.m.
Kedisha Wilson said she received a call informing her that her 16-year-old son Kiondae, a student at Westminster Christian School, had been shot in the leg. “That’s a feeling that I really can’t even describe. My heart just sank,” she said.
Also rushed to Jackson South was 17-year-old Andre Foster, Kiondae’s best friend and a student at South Ridge Senior High.
Miami-Dade Public Schools Superintendent Alberto Carvalho took to social media to express his outrage over the shooting.
He also spoke about the launch of a new gun violence prevention initiative for kids at an event, Monday. “Because the fiber and the soul of our community and many communities across the country is being irreparably chipped away,” Carvalho said. “As old as 13, as young as 17, celebrating like any other kid would.”
Five out of the six students who were injured in the shooting attend district schools.
The outreach is coming for residents in Northwest Miami-Dade, not far from where 8-year-old Jada Page was shot and killed in a drive-by, a few weeks ago. “Bring victim services, trauma services employment service,” said Wayne Rawlins, a Miami-Dade anti-gang consultant.
Kiondae was transported to Jackson South Community Hospital, where he underwent surgery and is recovering in the intensive care unit. “My baby, he’s strong. He’s a fighter,” said Wilson.
Foster was sent directly to the ICU and into surgery. His mother, Shanta Grant, described how a bullet went through both of his legs, causing serious damage. “They’re still monitoring the main artery that was hit,” she said.
“Working on improving the relationship that we have with the community because we feel like that is a way to get information, to get tips, to get some of these violent criminals off the street,” Miami-Dade Police Maj. Ricky Carter said at the meeting.
7News cameras showed crime scene tape cast outside at the scene of the shooting, Sunday afternoon. Area residents declined to comment on the shooting.
In the aftermath of this display of gun violence, those directly affected are left with many unanswered questions. “It definitely has to stop,” said Grant. “We have to guide our children a little bit better than we’re doing.”
“It’s very senseless,” said Wilson.
The conditions of the four other victims are unknown.
At a meeting held at Arcola Lakes Library, Monday evening, community leaders announced plans to roll out a new violence prevention program. “This is a challenge that we have to sort through together,” said Miami-Dade Public Schools Chief Strategy Officer Lisa Martinez.
The initiative raises awareness about social isolation and the importance of creating connected communities.
If you have any information on this shooting, call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a $1,000 reward.
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