15-year-old shot, killed Sunday in Durham is 7th in his age range this year; community demands change

Durham County News

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) – The Durham community is demanding change after a 15-year-old boy was shot and killed near downtown Sunday morning.

The family of 15-year-old Anthony Adams said he was shot while he was standing outside of an apartment complex near East Main and South Elm streets just after 10 a.m. on Sunday.

Durham police said the teen had been shot several times. He was taken to the hospital where he later died.

Authorities said the shots were fired from a passing vehicle. So far, no arrests have been made.

“It’s just hard to really wrap your mind around. It just feels surreal,” said friend Curtis Powell.

Powell said Adams had just gone into the ninth grade at Southern High School. He said Adams was a good kid who enjoyed playing basketball.

“Y’all killed someone who touched a lot of hearts and meant a lot to a lot of people,” Powell said.

Powell said he would like to see the city do more to curb violence in the community.

“It’s deeper than what everybody else is looking at. They just see a shooting with a teenager, but it’s way deeper than that. He had a future ahead of him,” Powell said.

Ernest Lee lives at the complex. He said he heard multiple shots fired on Sunday morning.

“My daughter can’t even come out of the house. I’m secluding my daughter because I’m afraid,” Lee said.

Lee said there needs to be more places for young people to turn to in the Durham community other than toward gangs and gun violence.

“We live here in these townhouses and I’ve told them several times that we need to have something for these kids to do,” Lee said. “If we give them something to do, there wouldn’t be as much things going on.”

When going through past stories, CBS 17 found that Adams is the seventh individual between the ages of 12-19 to have died from gunshot wounds in Durham this year.

“Children are dying. There’s nothing more pressing,” said Mark-Anthony Middleton, a Durham City Councilman.

Middleton said long-term solutions are needed to address the violence. He said police are addressing problems in the short-term right now.

In an email, Durham police said they have increased visibility in certain areas and they also have a Violent Crime Task Force that continues to focus specifically on shooting cases.

Authorities said that the task force works closely with investigators from the Intelligence Unit, Gang Unit, patrol officers, and other DPD employees to gather information to identify emerging trends and suspects.

“We’ve got to do things in the short term that will immediately stem this violence and save lives, and then have a conversation about what we need to do to address the root causes to make violence less likely,” Middleton said.

Durham Mayor Steve Schewel said he will be having a press conference later in the week to talk more thoroughly about what the city plans to do to address the problem with gun violence.

The Adams family started a GoFundMe to help with funeral expenses.

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