RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — A Chesterfield family is in mourning after their 17-year-old son was found shot to death in Richmond’s Southside on May 24.
Family tells 8News that T.J. Harris, a junior at L.C. Bird High School, had just gotten off work when someone gunned him down.
“He got off work and went to see his cousin,” said Anthony Harris, the teen’s father. “Something happened…we still haven’t figured out what happened yet, but it ended with him getting shot.”
The shooting happened in the 2400 block of Terminal Avenue just before midnight. The Richmond Police Department rushed to the scene and found Harris unresponsive in someone’s yard. He was pronounced dead at the scene, it was the first juvenile homicide of the year for the city.
“We see it happen to everybody else, we never really expected it to happen to us,” Harris’ father said. “So, when it happened to us, it’s really shocking and painful.”
At last check, Richmond Police hadn’t released any information regarding a possible suspect in the shooting.
This month, city leaders met to discuss summer initiatives to curb gun violence, especially among the youth. But this latest shooting also raises questions about prior promises, included the violence interrupters the city promised more than a year ago.
In April, Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney told 8News that the interrupters had all been hired, and were “doing some training because this is some serious work they’re dealing with.”
It’s unclear how many have been hired or when they’ll hit the streets of Richmond; however, in the meantime, grieving families are urging the community to end the violence.
“Put the guns down… you have a long life to live. If you have to be around somebody and you need a gun… you shouldn’t be around that person,” Harris said.
Anyone with information about this incident is asked to call Major Crimes Detective G. Russell at (804) 646-7715.