'People come and go.' Mount Vernon students say deadly shootings have become routine

Mount Vernon's Acting School Superintendent Dr. K. Smith says there is a crisis team on hand for students who may be having difficulty with the death of 18-year-old Tamani Turner.

Ben Nandy

Apr 10, 2023, 10:41 AM

Updated 403 days ago

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Students returned to Mount Vernon High School for the first time since a ninth-grade classmate was gunned down last Thursday.
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Mount Vernon's Acting School Superintendent Dr. K. Smith says there is a crisis team on hand for students who may be having difficulty with the death of 18-year-old Tamani Turner.
Officials say Turner, of Mount Vernon, was shot twice in the chest around 12:30 p.m. Thursday at Garden Avenue and East Fourth Street. He was rushed to Montefiore New-Rochelle Hospital and was taken into surgery in critical condition. He succumbed to his injuries Thursday around 7:30 p.m.
Cristian Guzman, who dropped off his younger brother this morning, has two children of his own, ages 4 and 5. Guzman says they won't be attending Mount Vernon schools.
"I'm looking at going to another district, or even moving out of the city to be honest with you, because it's just ridiculous at this point," he said.
Students who spoke with News 12 say shootings are becoming routine.
As they were arriving, students Deejon Benjamin and Eglis Hernandez said the school day isn't going to feel much different for them. They're sad about the shooting but they're not surprised.
"At this point, it's kind of normal. People come and go," says Hernandez, a sophomore.
"It's normal. It's the era we're living in. It's kind of dangerous, but it's like you somewhat get used to it," added Benjamin, also a sophomore.
Mayor Shawyn Patterson-Howard, who went to the crime scene the night of the shooting, says her team is working on public safety programs, which include mentorship programs, neighborhood watch groups, and a renewed effort to retain police officers.
Police say 33-year-old Akeem Grant, of Mount Vernon, was arrested for Turner's death.
Anyone with any information can reach out to the Mount Vernon Detective Division at 914-665-2510. 
The city was scheduled to provide more details about the shooting during a news conference Monday, but it was canceled at the request of the district attorney.


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