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2 arrested in shooting near Clayton County, Ga., school after graduation

By Zach Hansen and Chelsea Prince
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

May 19. 2018 11:11PM




ATLANTA — Clayton County police have made two arrests in the Friday night deadly shooting in the parking lot across the street from Mount Zion High School.

The names of those arrested and their charges are not being released as additional charges are expected, Clayton police spokeswoman Officer Marcena Davis said.

One woman was killed and another was injured when gunfire was exchanged around 8 p.m. The lot at the high school was being used as overflow parking for the Perry Career Academy graduation at the Clayton County Performing Arts Center, which is across the street on Mount Zion Parkway.

Perry Career Academy is an alternative high school in Jonesboro.

The ceremony had recently ended when the women were shot, but the incident was not related to the graduation or the high school, according to the school district.

A 21-year-old woman was shot in the leg and the other was shot three times, Channel 2 Action News reported. The woman shot in the leg was transported to a local hospital and is expected to survive.

The woman killed was in her 40s, according to Channel 2. She has not been identified.

Police said two parties were involved in a verbal argument and then began shooting at each other. The arrests were made after investigators interviewed several people late into the night, Davis said.

“Currently, we are still openly investigating this fluid incident and want to provide the most accurate information available,” Davis said in a news release.

A third woman, who is 36 weeks pregnant, was reportedly thrown to the ground in the chaos, the news station reported. She was not seriously injured.

“While our school district community is rightfully concerned about the incident, it is disappointing that it has overshadowed and diminished a positive memory for an exceptional group of graduating seniors,” Clayton County schools superintendent Morcease Beasley said in a statement. “Violence of any kind is not tolerated on a district campus nor at a district event.”

The district is preparing for another round of high school graduations next week at the Georgia International Convention Center in College Park, and Beasley said the events will have “a visible security presence.”

“We ask everyone who plans to attend any of the 10 ceremonies, that they conduct themselves in accordance with the nature of the event, recognizing the positive accomplishments of Clayton County’s youth,” Beasley said.

No further details on the shooting were released.


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