Two people fatally shot at North Carolina Central football game

Tavis Rhodes was one of the victims and his family says they are distraught at having to deal with life without him

Two people are dead after shots rang out on the North Carolina Central University campus on Saturday, Sept. 18. No students from the university were involved in the shooting, per a statement from university officials.

Students received an alert from campus police after a report of shots fired around 9:30 p.m. on Saturday evening. The shooting took place at the Latham Parking Deck on East Lawson Street. Two men were injured and later died in the hospital.

At the time, a football game was ongoing at the university. More than 5,600 attendees of the game were immediately placed on lockdown at the O’Kelly-Riddick Stadium when the shooting happened. Local roads were also closed off to traffic as police investigated. No one at the football game was able to leave the stadium without an escort from campus police.

“Thanks to the well-trained, quick-acting NCCU Police Department, no members of the NCCU community or it’s guests were impacted by this tragedy,” a statement from university officials reads in part. Despite the shooting, university officials insist the campus remains a “safe community.”’

Local police in Durham say they are searching for a black Nissan Altima with tinted windows, the car that the alleged shooter or shooters were driving in. As of now, there is no motive for what led to the shooting. 

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Crime scene tape is stretched around the front of a home where a man was shot on May 28, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Tavis Rhodes, 20, is one of the men killed in the shooting. His family spoke to the media outlet about their grief. Rhodes is a 2019 graduate of Hillside High School and also served in the Army Reserves. He leaves behind a 3-month-old son.

“I’m still trying to wrap my mind around this. I will never see my son again,” Rhodes’ mother told reporters. For safety reasons, she asked WRAL News not to be identified by name.

She said that her son was passionate, hardworking, and dedicated.

“The last time I saw him, he was in his uniform walking into the house,” she continued. “I am going to remember my son for who he was, and I know Tavis was an awesome person.”

Now, her grandson is left without a father, which is painful for Rhodes’ girlfriend when she thinks of having to raise their son on her own.

“I come from a two-parent household so I wanted for that for my child. I wanted him to grow in a two-parent household with parents that love each other so much,” Rhodes’ girlfriend told reporters.

There have been 30 homicides in the city of Durham this year.

“It sickens me,” said Durham councilman Mark-Anthony Middleton. “This is a de-facto of emergency in our city and I think we need to treat it as such, mainly at City Hall.”

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