Two 16-year-olds have been charged with murder after a shooting at a 16th birthday party in Alabama that killed four people and hurt 32 others.
Ty Reik McCullough, 17, and Travis McCullough, 16, both of Tuskegee, Alabama, were arrested and charged with four counts of careless murder.
It happened after a shooting on Saturday at the Mahogany Masterpiece Dance Studio in Dadeville, a small town 50 miles from the state capital, Montgomery.
On Sunday, hundreds of people came together to remember the four people who died.
The two teens were charged as adults, and authorities will ask a judge to keep them in jail without bail.
District Attorney Mike Segrest said, “We’ll make sure justice is done for all of those victims, not just the ones who died.”
Alexis Dowdell’s birthday party was being held at the dance school just off the town’s main square. This is where the victims were having fun.
People who were there said that the birthday girl’s mother stopped the party to ask people with guns to leave, and then the shooting started.
Alexis told people later how her 18-year-old brother Phil Dowdell died trying to protect her during the attack.
As shots were being fired, he pushed her to the floor and died in her arms.
After the charges were announced, the cops wouldn’t say what they thought was behind the mass shooting.
Sergeant Jeremy Burkett of the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency said, “We can’t talk about a motive right now because that would be part of an ongoing case. We can’t give that to you.”
At the scene, shell casings from handguns were found, and there was no proof that a high-powered rifle was used.
Phil Dowdell was a great wide receiver who wanted to go to college and play American football.
Shaunkivia Nicole “KeKe” Smith, 17, an aspiring athlete; Marsiah Emmanuel “Siah” Collins, 19, a hopeful singer; and Corbin Dahmontrey Holston, 23; were also killed.
His family says that Mr. Holston went to the party to check on a younger family member because they thought there might be trouble.
Alexis’s mother, LaTonya Allen, turned on the lights at the party when she heard that someone had a gun.
She used a microphone in the DJ booth to say, “If you have a gun, you need to leave because we’re here to celebrate Alexis’s 16th birthday.”
Why Would You Bring a Gun to a Kids Party?
When no one answered, she turned off the lights, and then shots were fired.
At least 15 teenagers were taken to a hospital with shooting wounds.
As Ms. Allen stood in a hallway, she was hit twice.
Witnesses didn’t say that they saw anyone arguing before the shooting started.
Alexis Dowdell told CNN, “Why would you pull out a gun at a kid’s party and just start shooting, killing innocent people, and hurting others? The reason is still not clear.”
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say that in 2020, Alabama had the fifth most gun deaths of any state in the country.
The Gun Violence Archive says that the attack was the 160th mass shooting in the US this year.
The group says that a mass shooting is an attack in which at least four people are killed or hurt by gunshots.
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