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Police charge man in community center shooting

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(Photo Source: WMC Action News 5) (Photo Source: WMC Action News 5)
Memphis police are investigating a community center after a child, possibly 11 years old, was shot in the area. (Photo Source: WMC Action News 5) Memphis police are investigating a community center after a child, possibly 11 years old, was shot in the area. (Photo Source: WMC Action News 5)
Johnson is charged with aggravated assault and unlawful possession of a weapon. (Photo Source: Shelby County Jail) Johnson is charged with aggravated assault and unlawful possession of a weapon. (Photo Source: Shelby County Jail)
MEMPHIS, TN -

(WMC) - Memphis police charged 21-year-old Joseph Johnson in a shooting at a community center after a child, possibly 11 years old, was reportedly shot while playing basketball Thursday.

Medical crews took the victim to Le Bonheur Children's Hospital, where he or she remains in critical condition.

Police lined Westwood Community Center—officially called Charles E. Powell Community Center—and its basketball court with crime scene tape. Music from the ice cream truck poured in as blue lights flooded the streets in the neighborhood.

Twelve-year-old Chikezie Pirtle said he heard shots just before he and his friends had planned to go the center to play basketball. His friend, Aaron Parker, also 12, said he leaves the center when he sees gang members there.

"It could have been one of my boys cause they've been over there all day playing," mother Katrina Winston told WMC Action News 5's Janice Broach. "I think it's sad. We just moved in this area. We're new to Memphis, and it's been this ever since we've been here. So I think we made the wrong decision."

Johnson is charged with aggravated assault and unlawful possession of a weapon. He was booked into Shelby County Jail early Friday morning.

But a similar scene occurred in January 2013, when two teens were shot near the southwest Memphis community center. One of those teens had to be airlifted to Regional Medical Center.

In 2012, an 18-year-old was also shot at the center, and he died leaving behind a 7-month-old son.

Copyright 2014 WMC Action News 5. All rights reserved. 

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