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Statesboro Police investigating shooting at Cottage Row apartments early Sunday morning

Published: Jul. 11, 2021 at 11:16 PM EDT|Updated: Jul. 12, 2021 at 4:59 PM EDT
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STATESBORO, Ga. (WTOC) - A shooting at a party in Statesboro is under investigation.

According to the Statesboro Police Department, early Sunday at 1:21 a.m., an SPD patrol officer was on a routine traffic stop on Highway 67 when he heard multiple gunshots coming from Cottage Row Apartments off Fair Road. That officer responded, along with several others, and observed what they described as a chaotic scene with multiple people fleeing the complex. They say several apartments and vehicles were struck by gunfire.

Minutes later, police say a 19-year-old male arrived at East Georgia Regional Medical Center with a gunshot wound to the back. He was later transported to Memorial in Savannah where he is currently listed in stable condition.

Multiple detectives responded to process the large scene and interview witnesses. They say it appears as though a large party, promoted through social media, was being held at one of the apartments and an argument broke out which led to an exchange of gunfire between two groups.

The shooting has police asking for your help and some residents wondering what can be done to prevent this from happening again.

“We were with the cop and all heard the gunshots. If I’d gotten home a minute earlier, we’d have been right in the middle of it,” said neighbor Hannah Lee.

Hannah Lee says a traffic stop for a broken tail late might have saved them from being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Hannah says she’s lived here for three years and parties here and elsewhere around town have gotten bigger and often turn violent.

“There’s always been parties because it’s Statesboro and a party town. But lately, it seems like parties have gotten out of hand.”

While police are now working with Cottage Row to get access to their security footage, they say an eye witness provides much more.

“Cameras, regardless of how good they are, don’t tell you the back story. What was the dynamic before the fight broke out and then the shooting happened,” said Capt. Jared Akins with Statesboro Police.

SPD says management of Cottage Row is cooperating in the investigation.

Detectives are asking for any witnesses to the shooting to come forward with information. Detective Katie Reese is the lead on the case and can be reached at 912-764-9911. Anonymous tips can be submitted to tips@statesboroga.gov.

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