Crime & Courts

Teen whose shooting near South Meck locked down schools isn't a student, CMS says

The 17-year-old shot in the leg near South Mecklenburg High School is not a student in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, a district spokeswoman said Friday.

The shooting took place at a city bus stop next to Quail Corners shopping center around 8 a.m. Thursday, 45 minutes after South Meck started classes. Ashton White, the 17-year-old victim, told police an unknown assailant shot him.

South Meck and nearby Quail Hollow Middle School and Smithfield Elementary were locked down all day, with after-school activities cancelled Thursday. Charlotte Catholic High School, about 2 miles away, was locked down for about 30 minutes after the shooting; the principal said it was a precaution in case there was a suspect on the run.

Thursday afternoon Charlotte-Mecklenburg police charged White with misdemeanor possession of marijuana paraphernalia. As of 5 p.m. Friday police had announced no other arrests and had not released any information about a suspect in the shooting.

A Thursday report from the scene by a WSOC-TV reporter said police had identified the victim as a South Meck student. That report also quoted another South Meck student, who said she had heard the shot and seen the teen bleeding from the leg, as saying the victim initially said he had shot himself.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg police told the Observer Thursday they couldn’t say whether White was a student. CMS police, who were also called in, did not respond to queries, and CMS spokeswoman Renee McCoy initially said school board policy and federal privacy laws prohibited CMS from saying whether the victim was a student.

However, she said Friday she had learned that he was not a CMS student.

Ann Doss Helms: 704-358-5033, @anndosshelms