Jacksonville State commit Philstavious Dowdell killed in Dadeville shooting
Jacksonville State commit Philstavious "Phil" Dowdell was one of four people shot and killed Saturday night when 19 people were injured during a birthday party in Dadeville, Ala.
Dowdell was identified as one of the dead by his grandmother as well as a pastor who doubles as chaplain of the Dadeville High football team. Dowdell was slated to be a wide receiver at Jacksonville State.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Philstavious Dowdell and the other victims of the senseless tragedy last night," Gamecocks coach Rich Rodriguez said in a statement. "He was a great young man with a bright future. My staff and I are heartbroken and hope that everyone will support his family through this difficult time."
Authorities are investigating the incident. Reports indicate at least 15 others were injured.
The birthday party was for Dowdell's younger sister Alexis, who was turning 16, according to Ben Hayes, the pastor at Dadeville First Baptist Church. It was held at a dance studio and gunfire erupted at approximately 10:30 p.m. CT in Dadeville, a town of 3,000 located about 45 miles northeast of Montgomery.
The grandmother, Annette Allen, told The Montgomery Advertiser, "He was a very, very humble child. Never messed with anybody. Always had a smile on his face."
Dowdell also was a sprinter for the Dadeville High track and field squad.
"What we've dealt with is something that no community should have to endure," Dadeville police chief Jonathan L. Floyd said at a press conference. "I just ask for your patience. It's going to be a long process, but I do earnestly solicit your prayers."
President Joe Biden expressed remorse over the country's latest mass shooting, saying "What has our nation come to when children cannot attend a birthday party without fear?"
--Field Level Media
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