Activists calling for security measures at club after deadly shooting
NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - Advocates with the National Racial Justice Network say Wednesday night’s deadly shooting at a Rivers Avenue bar is one of four in the past few years.
Zarria Mariah Gadsden, 22, died at the scene of the shooting at North Park Grill earlier this week. Kareem Brown lost his nephew about a year ago at a shooting near the business. Brown says none of the those young people enjoying their night deserved to die.
“Young lady didn’t have nothing to do with the incident, but someone started shooting into the club, no one trying to break it up, who’s responsible?” Brown asks.
National President of the network, Dr. Candace Brewer, says she wants to see safety measures put in place at North Park Grill and eventually at other businesses.
“We’re not calling for the club to be shut down, what we’re asking is that they implement so me security measures,” Brewer says. “When people are allowed to enter this club with guns and then a life is taken, something has to be done.”
She and other advocates suggest security guards, pat-downs to enter, no guns allowed inside and metal detectors if necessary. They also ask for increased police presence.
“When someone wakes up and they decide that they are going out partying, the last thing on their mind is losing their life,” Brewer says. “So we’re asking for better security measures right here at this club.”
Brown is a former club owner. He remembers a shooting happened when he owned a business, and cannot believe there have not been changes yet at North Park Grill.
“When I had my club, I had a shooting out there, they were ready to take my business license, ready to take my liquor license, had SLED coming in the club…nothing’s happening,” Brown says.
The Racial Justice Network is hosting a summit next month to address what they are calling an uptick in violence.
There were 119 shootings that resulted in injury and 36 that resulted in death in 2021, according to North Charleston Police Department and the Charleston County Sheriff’s Office. So far in 2022, there have been 20 shootings than resulted in death and 76 that resulted in injury.
Andrea Manigualt’s son died in a shooting and she has been an active member and chapter president for the Racial Justice Network since.
“Every time I hear about a shooting, it’s like it opens up that wound all over again,” Manigualt says. “It’s very hard for me to hear about, especially the young folks losing their lives to gun violence. It’s very hard for me to process over and over and over again.”
Activists at the conference entered the North Park Grill to leave contact information for the owner. The business did not want to provide a statement at this time.
Copyright 2022 WCSC. All rights reserved.