MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A 17-year-old girl is dead and a three-year-old is in the hospital after a very violent weekend in Memphis, and the neighbors say crime continues to plague their community.
“Oh! I pray for the repose of the soul of whoever was killed,” Roger Wolcott said, Executive Director at Constance Abbey.
It was a long night for people living on Exchange Avenue in North Memphis near downtown. Memphis Police officers swarmed this community after a 17-year-old girl was found dead.
A three-year-old was taken to the hospital in critical condition. Police say the person responsible was gone by the time they arrived.
“Nobody knew what direction it was coming from initially,” Wolcott said.
The shooting happened right next to Constance Abbey – a daytime hospitality center primarily for the homeless. Executive Director Roger Wolcott said he heard nearly 50 rounds.
He said when he looked out the window, he saw people jumping out of a vehicle and another vehicle speeding off. WREG’s cameras watched as officers spent a lot of their time searching an abandoned building.
Wolcott said he’s been in the community ministering and feeding those in need since 2013 but crime in the area has been an issue since day one.
“We’re struggling. It’s hard to get donations with this kind of violence around. We’ve had people come here to bring us clothing and food and they’re afraid to get out of their cars,” Wolcott said.
MPD has not released a motive for the killing. Wolcott said much of the criminal activity surrounds the same abandoned building. He said he hopes they can continue to be a beacon for those in the area and prevent tragedies such as this from happening again.
“We feel like God sent us here,” Wolcott said.
So far, no arrests have been made in this case.
If you know anything about this incident, you are urged to call CrimeStoppers at 901-528-CASH.