Community leaders demand action after teen selling water in College Park was shot

College Park police are working to find whoever shot a 17-year-old several times while he was selling water.

It happened just before 12:30 Thursday afternoon on the Old National Highway exit ramp off of Interstate 285.

Many organizations and community leaders said they aren’t just going to complain but they are taking action to help.

"We don’t need to criminalize the water boys we need to provide assistance and guidance," Civil Rights Attorney Gerald Griggs said.

Griggs hopes Thursday’s shooting is a wake-up call. 

Police said two people inside a car approached four teens selling water and opened fire hitting one of the teens several times. 

"It’s time for action it’s time for older adults to provide guidance. It’s time for elected officials to provide programs that can help facilitate moving forward for the young men," Griggs said. 

Griggs said he wants to be a part of the solution.

"I have spoken to several teens out there. With schools closing down during the pandemic they needed to find a way to support themselves and their family and they saw this as a legal way to support themselves and family," Griggs said. 

Griggs supports an organization called ‘Helping Empower Youth’ which helps teens in the community. 

"They’ve now acquired a property in southwest Atlanta they are renovating. It’s actually Katherine Johnson’s old home to have a hub for the water boys to help train them and to make sure their needs are taken care of," Griggs said. 

The house once belonged to 92-year-old Katherine Johnston who was killed 15 years ago when police served a no-knock warrant and went to the wrong home. 

"I hope this is a rally call to all the stakeholders that it’s time do something today," Griggs said. 

College Park police have not released any suspect information. 

Anyone who knows anything about the shooting is asked to come forward.

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