Ross, of Riverdale, was the fourth Clayton County student to be gunned down in the past month.
“Our neighborhood is going crazy,” Mahone said from his Minnesota college campus last week.
Mahone, 20, said he worries about the safety of his little brother, Darius, a Pointe South Middle School student, and his neighborhood friends.
Gang violence is nothing new for Clayton County. In the past five years, more than a dozen teenagers have died in gang shootings.
The latest streak especially troubles the beleaguered Clayton school system, where school leaders have watched 3,000 students flee recently because of loss of Southern Association of Colleges and Schools accreditation.
Now they worry about losing kids to gunfire and jail.
“It’s not about SACS. Lord help us if we can get to SACS,” Superintendent John Thompson said. “I wish it was about academics. It’s about life and death.”
School officials need to worry about parents pulling their children out for safety reasons, said Riverdale mother Evelyn Mgbemena.
Mgbemena, a nurse at Southern Regional Health System, and her husband have changed their work schedules so they can drive their five sons to school.
“I’ve been very scared,” she said as she picked up one son from Riverdale Middle School. “I don’t allow them to walk — even though they don’t like it.”
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Clayton County Georgia - Recent Spike In Teen Homicides
AJC: Clayton aghast at slayings of teens