ALIQUIPPA (KDKA) — Community leaders in Aliquippa are calling for an end to violence after three teenagers were charged with homicide in connection with the shooting deaths of two of their peers.
People in Aliquippa gathered Saturday morning for a day of healing and prayer. The city is recovering from a terrible week of violence that has left two people dead and three others facing homicide charges. All of those involved are teenagers.
“A few of our young people are involved in this, and the two young people that lost their lives, I’m terribly sorry that it happened in the streets of Aliquippa,” Aliquippa Mayor D’Wan Walker said. “But now we need to focus on Aliquippa and getting Aliquippa better.”
Lawrence Reddick, 17, surrendered to face charges in the shooting death of 16-year-old Cade Booher, of Beaver, during what police call a drug deal rip-off.
Booher, along with 18-year-old Dane Mathesius, from Brighton Township, and a 13 year old, came to Aliquippa to sell marijuana. Police believe Reddick shot Booher during a robbery attempt. Mathesius and the 13 year old got out of the car and ran. The 13 year old escaped, but Mathesius was found a few days later, shot to death.
Mayor Walker says it’s time for the people of Aliquippa to take a stand against violence.
“It’s important for us to come together and put aside differences and disagreements to get on one accord about changing the city and our young people and impacting them on a personal level,” he said.
“We’ve been afraid, honestly,” community activist Herbert Bailey said. “I’ve talked to some people who have been afraid to be involved, so this was a show of we’re not afraid anymore.”
Two 17-year-old football players, Ronald Foster, Jr. and Deontae Jones, are also charged with homicide. Police say Foster, Jones and Reddick planned to rob Booher during the drug deal.
“This is not something that affected one or two people,” Bailey said. “This affected the entire community, and so we are going to respond.”