JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A teenager was hospitalized after being shot Thursday afternoon on the city's Westside, the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office said.
Officers were called about 3:30 p.m. to a shooting on 103rd Street outside a Ying's Chinee Takee Outee, less than 100 yards from Chosen Ones Learning Center.
When they arrived, police learned a juvenile had been shot in the torso area and had already been taken to nearby Orange Park Medical Center's Park West ER.
As of 10 p.m. Thursday, parents told News4Jax the teenager was in critical but stable condition at the hospital.
A woman who heard gunshots said she's sick of the violence, especially after the shooting on Town Center Parkway Tuesday night.
"My friends actually got shot the other day," said Ashley, who only gave her first name. "Those boys that passed away, three boys. Yeah, that’s Jacksonville for you.”
Moments after the shooting, Chosen Ones staff told News4Jax, the teenage boy who was shot and his friend ran into the center for help and asked them to call 911.
"It's sad and it's scary," said Shay, who works at Chosen Ones Learning Center. "It's not just happening here, it could happen anywhere."
Amber, a parent of a child at the day care, then took the victim to the emergency room.
"He was very calm. He said, 'Ma'am, don't let me die.' I was, like, 'Just relax. Don't say anything, save your energy, don't be talking. The friend was, like, 'Don't let my friend die,'" Amber said. "I was, like, 'You need to calm down because you're going to upset him. You're more stressed than he is and he (was) the one shot.'"
Boucher said the victim's friend was being interviewed, and detectives were searching three scenes. He said a gun was found less than a block away on Norde Drive West, and shell casings were also found at two other scenes.
"This is very unsettling for me because I don't want that to happen to my kid," Amber said.
The Sheriff's Office continues to investigate.
Anyone with information is asked to call JSO at 904-630-0500. To remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers at 1-866-845-TIPS (8477).