A party for a group of teenagers in an East Charlotte neighborhood escalated early Sunday, culminating in the death of a recent high school graduate, police and neighbors said.
Kevin Washington, 18, was shot to death shortly after midnight Sunday during an altercation at a party in the 6000 block of Timbertop Lane, in the Bristol Farms neighborhood.
Two others were seriously injured, police said.
Garrett Hall, 18, was shot in the leg and remained hospitalized Sunday at Carolinas Medical Center. Tevin Horton, 18, was shot in the arm. He was treated at the hospital and later released.
As of Sunday afternoon, police had not identified a suspect in the shootings.
During the party, two groups got into an altercation that led to the shooting, which took place down the street from where the party was going on, police and neighbors said.
But neighbor Alsina McMorris said the party was already out of hand before the shooting. Ive never seen so many kids in my life. There was a lot of people, she said. I saw a lot of cars; I saw a lot of people coming in and out of that house.
McMorris said she decided to move her car into her driveway because she was concerned someone at the party would hit it.
While she was outside, about 11:30 p.m., the teenage girl who lives at the home where the party was taking place came out to ask McMorris if the party was disturbing her, she said.
McMorris told her it was.
She said, Im trying to keep them in the house, but I think we need to squash it because theyre not listening to me, said McMorris. Police did not say if adults were home during the party.
Within an hour of her conversation with the teenager, McMorris said she heard several gunshots.
I heard someone wailing outside and just knew someone had been shot, she said.
Within seconds of the shooting, dozens of people were fleeing from the scene, said Stephen McMorris, Alsina McMorris husband.
When the shots were fired, I looked out, and there were kids running in every backyard, he said. Its like when you step on an ant mound and the ants disperse everywhere.
On Sunday, remnants from the party were strewn throughout the area, including red Solo cups in the street and peoples yards.
A lone, black, glittery sandal sat between two yards.
You always wanted to be around him
Kevin Washington had recently moved back to Charlotte after spending a year in Keller, Texas, his friends said.
Members of his family could not be reached Sunday.
He had recently graduated from Central High School in Keller and hoped to attend college in North Carolina to study medicine, the friends said.
On Sunday, friends in Texas reminisced about how well-liked Washington was.
Parrish Smith recalled how Washington was always goofing around, flashing his broad, care-free smile everywhere he went.
His favorite memories with Washington were senior prom as well as their trip to South Padre Island, he said.
He was a goofball, always cracking jokes, he said. He was a truly amazing person. You always wanted to be around him.
Cole Howard, who played with him on the school football team, said Washington was a dedicated fullback who was very supportive of his teammates.
He was a really loving and caring person who was easy to get along with, said Howard. When he moved to Fort Worth, he instantly made friends with all of us. We just bonded so quick.
After graduation, Washington decided to move back to North Carolina to live with his father. His mother lives in Keller, said friends of Washington.
He hoped to attend UNC Charlotte, said Smith.
Smith said it was unlike Washington to get into an altercation with anyone.
We never got caught up in going to parties where there could possibly be guns like that or whatever, said Smith. I just honestly feel like he got caught up in the wrong crowd there, and he had influences there that he wouldnt have had here.
Police seeking information
Fire trucks remained in the East Charlotte neighborhood Sunday afternoon, cleaning up the marks from the crime-scene investigation.
Several young people were cleaning up Sunday at the home where the party was held, but they declined to comment.
Police asked anyone with information about the shooting to call 704-432-TIPS and speak directly to a Homicide Unit detective or to call Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600.
Staff Researcher David Raynor contributed.