Chattanooga police still are searching for the shooter responsible for wounding a 16-year-old pregnant teen at the East Lake Courts housing development Tuesday morning, Master Patrol Officer Nathan Hartwig said.
The teen sustained nonlife-threatening lower-back injuries and a fractured hip, Chattanooga police said. The fetus was not injured.
The teen was standing near housing units with a group of people when someone in a dark-color SUV drove near the group and fired eight shots, Sgt. Barry Burns said Tuesday. He said the shooter drove away toward Rossville afterward.
Police were called at 11:13 a.m. to 2243 E. 25th St.
Residents reported hearing gunshots. Police at the scene said the shooter may have used a 9mm or a .40-caliber gun.
East Lake Courts residents said Tuesday that shootings are not uncommon at the development, and they said it needs better security.
"We need protection. We fear for our lives," resident Jet Rose said. She feels her little girl's life is in danger, living at East Lake Courts. She said guns are unsafe, and despite the violence in the area she refuses to get a gun of her own.
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"Guns ain't safe even in your home when you have kids," she said.
Lilly Rose, her cousin, said she hopes someday East Lake Courts residents can receive Housing Choice vouchers for private housing and get away from the shootings.
"It never fails," she said. "The struggle is real. Every day, it's a struggle."
Rose said the city's recent move to tear down old housing developments forces more residents into smaller areas.
"If they rip up another project, more people are going to die," she said.
Hartwig said it's unclear whether the teen in Tuesday's shooting was the intended target or what the motive may have been. Anyone with information is asked to call Chattanooga police at 698-2525.
Contact staff writer Alex Green at firstname.lastname@example.org or 423-757-6731.