Suspect identified in shooting that injured preteen girls

Suspect identified in shooting that injured preteen girls
(Source: WMC Action News 5)
(Source: WMC Action News 5)

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - Two preteen girls were injured in a shooting Wednesday, Memphis Police Department confirmed.

A 12-year-old girl got into a disagreement with a man, which escalated into him firing shots.

The victim's father said the gunman was trying to hit her 15-year-old sister and shot her in the leg instead.

She was hospitalized in non-critical condition. An 11-year-old girl was also grazed by the bullet on her left thumb.

Thursday, police identified the suspect as 23-year-old Laquavis Campbell and arrested him without incident. He is charged with seven counts of aggravated assault.

The shooting happened near the intersection of National Street and Fairoaks Avenue; officers said there were five additional juvenile victims between 9-15 years old that Campbell fired upon but were not struck.

"I heard some gunshots, four or five of them," neighbor Jose Asura said.

Asura ran outside and saw his neighbor's teenage girls on the sidewalk.

"She was injured and I put her on my porch up here and we wrapped up her leg," Asura said.

Asura said they then called 911.

Just before that, the 12-year-old's sister, 15, called their father, letting him know what had happened.

"I was like 'shot by who, shot by who, where y'all at?'" the girls' father, Mario Whitten, asked.

Whitten ran to the house from down the street. His daughters said the brother of one of the girls at the house shot his 12-year-old daughter.

"He tried to shoot my 15-year-old first in the head, and she ducked and he ended up shooting my other daughter," Whitten said.

Even stranger, Whitten said he found out the girl who had been staying at the house with his daughters is a runaway.

Whitten found out when he took his daughters and the girl to school, and the principal told the girl she couldn't be at school.

"She just went crazy on the principal; and everybody," Whitten said.

Whitten said the girl was taken to juvenile court and her mother picked her up. He said her mother knew she had been staying with his daughters, so he's puzzled.

On top of everything that had already happened, someone's car got stuck in the mud near police and detectives investigating the 12-year-old's shooting.

Asura is just glad he could help.

"I'm going to sleep happy tonight knowing that I helped out somebody in the neighborhood," Asura said.

The 12-year-old and 11-year-old girls are both expected to recover.

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