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13-year-old fatally shot on way to Philadelphia middle school

Published: Oct. 9, 2021 at 2:23 AM CDT
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PHILADELPHIA (KYW) - A 13-year-old Philadelphia boy is dead after police say a group of people opened fire on the vehicle he was sitting in blocks away from his middle school.

Police rushed to the scene Friday morning in Philadelphia after gunfire left a 13-year-old boy dead as he was heading to E.W. Rhodes Middle School. Police say the teen was inside of a red PT Cruiser with four to five other people when a separate group of people approached the vehicle and started firing.

The incident happened around 9 a.m. just blocks from the school. The victim turned 13 a day before his death, neighbors say.

Neighbors who heard the shots recall being startled before a group of young boys ran for cover. One boy says his 12- and 13-year-old friends witnessed the fatal shooting.

Officials put the school on lockdown, which was lifted Friday afternoon.

“It’s heartbreaking. I was in the school earlier, and students are shaken and staff is shaken. Parents are here, and they want to know if their children are OK,” said Monica Lewis with the Philadelphia School District.

Some parents picked up their kids early.

“School should be where kids are safe. They shouldn’t feel like their lives are in danger when they’re in school,” one parent said.

Another parent added that they shouldn’t have to worry about their kids, but “nowadays, I have to walk mine to and from every day.”

Police have not named any suspects. Anyone with information is urged to contact them.

The shooting marks the 34th child killed by gunfire in Philadelphia this year.

Copyright 2021 KYW via CNN Newsource. All rights reserved.