ROCK HILL — Police on Thursday investigated a midday shooting after a man claimed he was shot in the leg outside the Emmett Scott Recreation Center with groups of children and senior citizens nearby.
At about 3:14 p.m., officers swarmed the Crawford Road community center and found a man sitting in a Chrysler at the rear parking lot, suffering from a gunshot wound to the leg, said Rock Hill Police Executive Officer Mark Bollinger.
The victim told police he is a Clinton College student and went to the recreation center to ask about volunteer opportunities, Bollinger said.
He walked outside to his car, where he was for several minutes until a man dressed in all-black approached him, Bollinger said.
A heated exchange ensued, ending when the assailant shot the victim, Bollinger said.
The victim, whose age and name werent released, was taken by ambulance to Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, he said.
Police said the shooting did not involve the Clinton College campus, which is a short walk from the recreation center, nor was it related to an incident at Emmett Scott several weeks ago.
There were participants inside Emmett Scott at the time, but they were never in danger, Bollinger said. The staff did a great job in locking the facility down until officers secured the scene.
The center was holding its after-school program and a senior exercise class during the incident.
Within the last several years, Emmett Scott has worked to repair its reputation. The center offers a variety of tutoring, education, dancing and theater programs. A group of Winthrop University students, the Gentlemen's League, houses its mentoring program in the center.
The center is essential to the community, said city parks director John Taylor. He said residents are absolutely safe at the center.
On Thursday, children crowded the Emmett Scott Park when the gun was fired. As police vehicles and a K9 unit responded, Dia Barber feared the worst.
You cant even bring your children to the park because people are shooting at each other, she said.
Barber said shes tired of the gunfire.
Last month, Johnny Lee Ellison, 34, was killed in Barbers front yard after leaving a card game. Barber said the confrontation started at another home, where brothers David and Jaris Williams confronted Ellison and his brother.
The many people who were outside all ran into nearby houses as one of the Williams brothers chased Ellison into Barbers yard, she said. Thats when he was shot and stabbed, police said.