At least four people were killed and over a dozen more were injured in a shooting at a Sweet-16 birthday party in Dadeville, Ala. (northeast of Montgomery), over the weekend. Investigators were gathering evidence Sunday at an Alabama dance studio where the shooting occurred on Saturday night. Dadeville is a small community with a population of about 3,000 people.
Six of the wounded have been treated and released from Dadeville’s Lake Martin Community Hospital in Alabama, with nine other wounded teenagers have been transferred to other medical facilities, Senior state trooper Jeremy Burkett said during a press briefing Sunday that there has been a “multitude of injuries” and the investigation will be a “long and complicated process.” Burkett and other officials did not answer questions during the press briefing, and did not state whether a suspect has been identified.
Dadeville Police Chief Jonathan L. Floyd said during the press briefing: “What we’ve dealt with is something that no community should have to endure. I also ask each of you please do not let this moment define what you think about the city of Dadeville and our fine people … I just ask for your patience. It’s going to be a long process, but I do earnestly solicit your prayers.”
Pastor Ben Hayes, who serves as chaplain for the Dadeville Police Department and for the local high school football team, said the shooting has rocked the small town where serious crime is rare. He added: “One of the young men that was killed was one of our star athletes and just a great guy. So I knew many of these students. Dadeville is a small town and this is going to affect everybody in this area.” Tallapoosa County school superintendent Raymond C. Porter said that the school system said counseling will be available for students at the schools on Monday; and Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey tweeted: “This morning, I grieve with the people of Dadeville and my fellow Alabamians. Violent crime has NO place in our state, and we are staying closely updated by law enforcement as details emerge.”
Officials have asked that anyone with information call 1-800-392-8011 or email the crime tipline at email@example.com.
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