Four teenagers were mysteriously shot dead within hours of each other in a small South Carolina city over the weekend.
Officials in Newberry, South Carolina described the situation on Monday as a ‘tragic 24 hours.’ Police Chief Kevin Goodman said that the four teenagers were discovered within a block of each other.
The teens, who were between the ages of 15 and 19, were ‘at least associates within the same social circle,’ according to Goodman.
Authorities are still trying to determine whether the shootings, which took place several hours apart, were connected. No motive has been determined and no suspects have been arrested.
‘As someone who loves the community, someone who loves the youth in this community, I am in disbelief. We are losing our young people at an alarming rate,’ Goodman said.
The victim in the first shooting, which took place just after midnight Sunday, was 16-year-old Mykain Davis. The three teens killed in the second shooting were identified as Jahquindon Toland, 18; Jhisere Robinson, 15; and Sonterrious Davis, 19.
One of the people questioned in the first fatal shooting was killed in the second shooting, according to Goodman, who added that it was too early to determine if retaliation was involved.
Goodman, who grew up in the area and has worked in the city since 1995, said he had never seen a day as devastating as Sunday.
‘To the young people of Newberry. We love you and I love you,’ he said. ‘And I want nothing but the best for you. I’m here for you and we have to do better.’
The Newberry schools superintendent said in a statement that two of the victims were former students and two were currently enrolled at Newberry High School.
The high school held an e-learning day Monday, closing campus as a precaution following the weekend of violence.