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Youth Pastor Protects Teenage Victim during Mass Shooting

Scott Slayton | Contributor | Thursday, June 25, 2020
police caution tape crime scene do not cross

Youth Pastor Protects Teenage Victim during Mass Shooting

A youth pastor stepped in to protect a wounded teenager during a shootout at a party in Syracuse over the weekend.

According to the Christian Post, Nitch Jones, pastor of youth and young adult affairs at Zion Hill World Harvest Baptist Church was attending the annual “Rye Day” Party, which is held by local businessman and philanthropist Ryedell Davis for his birthday. Jones, who is 32 years old and has one child, was running the voter registration booth at the party when shots rang out, CNY Central reports.

Officers arrived on the scene after they received a complaint about a stolen vehicle.

According to CNN, as they exited their vehicles, hundreds of people were running away from the party yelling that people were shooting.

Jones described the scene in a Facebook video Sunday morning. He said he had not been to sleep since enduring the gunfight between rival gangs in which 9 people were injured by as many as 6 gunmen.

Jones said, “I have never been inside of a live warzone in my life.” He continued, saying, “I have been around or in the vicinity of someone shooting. But I have never been in the middle. Literally, we were in the middle … of a warzone, a battle, where guns were spraying all around us, where guns were spraying right in front of us and people were getting hit and they were feet in front of us.”

Then Jones described seeing the 17-year-old, who was the youngest of the victims. He said, “I seen a kid lying down unresponsive in front of me and there was nothing that I could do besides just lay there with him and wait for help and run for help. There was nothing that I could do. That hurt me beyond belief.”

He also told viewers what he and his cousin did to try to help the young man. “We can’t do CPR because he is laying on his stomach and we don’t move him. All we are doing is laying there to make sure nobody touches him or nobody moves him and we are continuing to check his pulse.” 

Syracuse Police are still investigating to determine exactly what happened. Police Chief Kenton Buckner told reporters, “I believe we have two or three different scenes, so I don’t know which location contributed to what victims.”

The 17-year-old victim that Jones protected had been shot in the head and remains in critical condition.

Photo courtesy: ©Pexels/Kat Wilcox

Scott Slayton writes at “One Degree to Another.”