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Columbia teen shot multiple times Friday afternoon

Friday, July 31, 2009 | 8:36 p.m. CDT; updated 10:18 a.m. CDT, Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Detectives survey the crime scene in front of a house located at 115 Benton St. A 15-year-old was shot several times Friday, sustaining injuries to both legs and one hand.

COLUMBIA — A 15-year-old male was shot multiple times Friday afternoon in central Columbia near the intersection of Benton Street and Garth Avenue.

Police received a call of shots fired at 3:53 p.m., and when units arrived at the location they discovered the victim lying in the street with multiple gunshot wounds, according to a news release from the Columbia Police Department.

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As of 7 p.m. Friday, the victim was alive, but his condition was unknown. Detective Jeff Westbrook said the injuries were not life-threatening.

Police said the suspect is a male driving a black pickup truck.

The Rev. Aaron Favors of the Log Providence Missionary Baptist Church, whose aunt lives on Benton Street, said he heard four shots and saw the victim lying in the street. Favors said he went to help the victim and observed four gun shot wounds: one in the right hand, two in the left leg and one in the right leg. Police have not confirmed the number of times the victim was shot.

Favors said the victim told him that the suspect shot him from a vehicle and fled the scene. He said the victim was responsive and speaking to him while they waited for emergency personnel to arrive.

“He hasn’t lived long enough to do enough to deserve that,” Favors said.

The shooting occurred in the street in front of the residence of Justin Purdy, who said he came home from work right around the time of the shooting but did not hear the shots because he was in the shower. He said in the two months he has lived there, he has not experienced any similar incidents.

“I take a little bit of solace in the fact that my neighbor told me that nothing like this has happened for the last three or four years,” he said. “So I guess it’s bad timing.” 


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