Buffalo Police have made an arrest in connection with the Tuesday shooting near the Oakmont Avenue footbridge which claimed the life of 14-year-old Raymond Patterson III.
Joseph Gant, 28,was taken into custody by police Thursday morning and charged with second-degree murder. Officials say the arrest was made after police received substantial information from the public. Gant, who also faces three counts of first-degree assault, is being held without bail. He pleaded not guilty at his arraignment.
"The community was hurt, the community was angry, and people responded. Oftentimes we think that people don't respond when things like this happen, that people will not step up, that people will not speak up. But I can tell you that people did step up, people did speak up, and that's why we have this arrest today," Brown said Thursday.
In recounting the incident Wednesday, Police Commissioner Daniel Derenda said the situation started with a fight between two teenage girls.
"It escalated to someone, at the foot bridge at Oakmont, pulling a gun and firing numerous shots into the crowd. The homicide victims and the other three victims, we don't believe were involved in the fight and had nothing to do with the fight whatsoever," Derenda said.
In a separate incident which took place around 10:30 p.m. Tuesday, 17-year old Ronnie Scott and 17-year-old Diamond Allen were shot on the 100 block of Shirley Avenue. Both victims were rushed to ECMC where Scott died. Allen was treated and released.
Anyone with information about the shootings is asked to call the Buffalo Police Confidential Tip Line at 847-2255.
Interim Buffalo schools superintendent Donald Ogilivie issued the following statement Wednesday:
It is my great sorrow to learn that Raymond Patterson III, a 14-year-old student of Buffalo Elementary School of Technology #6, was the victim of a fatal shooting yesterday. Three other students wounded in the same incident were treated, and are expected to recover. A subsequent gunshot victim from late Tuesday evening was not a student of the Buffalo Public Schools, though another student wounded in that incident was. The District Crisis Team has joined the Student Support Team to provide counseling and will be assigned to the various schools affected. Counselors are available for students, parents, and staff. As a school community, we will do all that we can to comfort those students and staff who are most affected by these tragic incidents. We extend our condolences to the families involved in their time of grief. Raymond's life was cut short, and it is painful. Children must be helped to understand the enormity of this event. Students themselves must be more involved in the discussion of how they might move away from violence that would take a young life.