‘Senseless’: Teen girl shot at Charlotte park might not walk again, family says

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A 15-year-old girl hurt in a shooting at a north Charlotte park might never walk again, her family said.

It happened Sunday around 4:30 p.m. at Mallard Creek Park on Johnston Oehler Road. The Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department said the teen, who was shot in the neck, was taken to the hospital. Her family said her name is Shamoni and they have started a GoFundMe for her medical bills.

On Monday, a report released to Channel 9 said that a second teen was hurt in the shooting but wasn’t taken to the hospital. Three vehicles were also shot into, according to the police report.

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Channel 9′s Hannah Goetz learned there may have been a large party happening at the same time. Witnesses told her the parking lot was filled with students from surrounding high schools on Sunday.

Videos posted to social media show a chaotic situation. The park was covered in crime scene tape, CMPD cruisers, and what appeared to be a car with a window shot out. Broken glass was still in the parking lot by Monday.

‘My baby was running for her life’

Shamoni, affectionately called “Moni” by her family, might not be able to walk again. Her aunt, Jackquelyn Harve, told Goetz her niece has a long road ahead and is fighting for her life.

Harve describes Moni as vibrant, fashionable and full of life.

“I think that’s another hard thing about it, is the fact that she’s so outgoing and so active in life, and that isn’t going to be her life anymore,” Harve said tearfully. “And that’s over something so senseless.”

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Harve told Goetz that Moni and a friend went to the Mallard Creek soccer fields Sunday afternoon. The video circulating on social media allegedly from that day shows dozens of people at a party being held in the parking lot. Many of them appear to have water or pellet guns.

“According to her friends, they were just out in the park, in the grass area, and heard some commotion,” Harve described.

She said the teens heard gunshots and took off running, but Moni was shot in the neck.

“When I got to the hospital, they gave me her phone and it was just all banged up,” she said. “So it was just clear that my baby was running for her life.”

But Moni’s future is still very uncertain. Harve said the bullet is lodged in her spine and could leave her with quadriplegia. But she said the most difficult thing she’s facing right now is not being able to see Moni. She said while police look for a suspect, they are limiting hospital visitors.

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“If there’s anybody watching this evening that either had something to do with this or knows what happened to Moni, what would you say to them right now?” Goetz asked.

“That is asking you to please come forward and let them know so that we can get in there and see Moni,” Harve said.

‘It’s a shame’

Russell Hawkins is a senior at Mallard Creek High School. He went to the park Monday for a quick workout and told Goetz about the shooting.

“From what I know, it was multiple schools here,” he said. “Some from Chambers, some from North Meck, obviously some from Mallard Creek. They were having a splat gun event -- it’s like, water pellets -- and they shoot each other with them and have fun.”

He said he stays away from those events, but showed Goetz a flyer that was making its rounds on social media promoting a splash and splat party at Mallard Creek soccer fields Sunday afternoon.

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“I guess something popped off, and unfortunately a young lady got shot,” Hawkins said.

Others using the park Monday for practice said they were surprised to hear about what had happened.

“It’s a shame. Me personally, I try to stay out the way. I try to come at times where I know it’s not going to be too hectic,” said Elijah Mak, who went to North Mecklenburg High School.

Mak said he avoids events like this as much as possible and wishes something could be done to keep parks like Mallard Creek safe.

“I just really wish someone was out there to teach them what to do and how to have fun, and be safe while having fun,” he said.

Police have not yet arrested a suspect. They said hundreds of people were at the park before the shooting happened, and are hoping someone who knows something will come forward.

This is a developing story. Check back for updates.

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