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‘Lives tragically lost’: 4 dead, multiple injuries in Dadeville, Alabama, shooting.

April 16, 2023

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DADEVILLE, Alabama – Police on Sunday were investigating a shooting that left at least four people dead and multiple others injured in Dadeville, about 50 miles northeast of Montgomery.

The shooting happened at a birthday party around 10:30 p.m., Sgt. Jeremy Burkett of the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency said. There was no initial confirmation about what led to the shooting, and it was not immediately known if a suspect was in custody.

“There were four lives tragically lost in this incident and there’s been a multitude of injuries,” Burkett said during a news conference Sunday morning.

The gunfire erupted in Mahogany Masterpiece dance studio, which was converted from old Bank of Dadeville two years ago. Some media outlets report as many as 20 people may have been shot at the gathering.

Police cordoned off several blocks near the crime scene Saturday night, including North Broadnax Street between Green and Columbus streets, and part of Cusseta Street. The strip includes professional services, a furniture store, PNC Bank and the Tallapoosa County Courthouse, which houses county services including the probate office.

Pastor says most of the victims were teens

Pastor Ben Hayes, who serves as the chaplain for the Dadeville Police Department and for the local high school football team, said most of the victims were teens. He said the shooting occurred at a birthday party for a 16-year-old, and the violence has shaken the small town where serious crime is rare.

“One of the young men that was killed was one of our star athletes and just a great guy. So I knew many of these students. Dadeville is a small town and this is going to affect everybody in this area,” Hayes said.

‘Babies – very devastating’

Ashley Hill lives in Opelika, but she traveled to downtown Dadeville with two other women after hearing about the shootings to find out whether a friend of the family was safe. “Babies – very devastating,” she said of the teens that had been at the studio.

Dadeville was hit by at least one prior mass shooting when a gunman on Aug. 28, 2016, wounded five people during a party at the American Legion Hall.

“This morning, I grieve with the people of Dadeville and my fellow Alabamians. Violent crime has no place in our state, and we are staying closely updated by law enforcement as details emerge,” Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey said in a statement posted on social media.

Where is Dadeville, Alabama?

Dadeville, the county seat of Tallapoosa County in East Central Alabama, has a population of about 3,000 people and is about 57 miles northeast of Montgomery.

“The city of Dadeville is a tight-knit community full of wonderful people,” Dadeville Chief of Police Jonathan Floyd told reporters Sunday morning. “What we’ve dealt with is something no community should have to endure.” (USA Today).

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