5 shot in Uptown Charlotte NYE celebration

Five people suffered non-life-threatening injuries in the shooting and three officers suffered minor injuries.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — A 19-year-old is facing multiple charges after a shooting that injured five people during a New Year’s Eve celebration in Uptown Charlotte, police confirmed Monday. CMPD has also arrested and charged 12 other people for their actions in the area. 

The shooting happened around Romare Bearden Park at 11:30 p.m. on Sunday, according to the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department. Investigators said a person shot into a crowd, striking five people. CMPD announced Monday that 19-year-old Daevion Markeith Crawford is charged with shooting into the crowded park. Crawford is charged with five counts of assault with a deadly weapon, as well as going armed to the terror of the people. 

“It’s pretty crazy, we did hear some shots going up, we don’t really know what’s going on, everyone started running the other way,” witness Isaiah Jonas said. 

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Crawford had his first court appearance on Tuesday. The judge raised his bond from $750,000 to $1.5 million, stating he was surprised it wasn’t higher to begin with.

The judge also shed light on the seriousness of the charges, saying it could’ve been worse, with lives lost.

His mother was in court showing support for her son, saying he’s a great person who works several jobs, and that police lack evidence that he was the shooter on New Year’s Eve.

Crawford’s next court date is January 23. If he makes bond and is released, he will have to wear an ankle monitor.

Now, Charlotte leaders are calling for action. 

“I think there’s an appetite for us to explore actually doing something that can make a dent in this problem,” Tariq Bokhari, Charlotte City Councilman, said. 

He is requesting a special task force to be launched on crime this new year, with the help of the North Carolina General Assembly. Bokhari hopes to gather data on repeat offenders and create new solutions.

“This is where I think a targeted approach using the data then going to the general assembly and saying we need tough laws on the parents of these kids,” Bokhari said. 

“We have 12 more calendar months to go, and we’re still talking about the same issue that left a bad taste in our mouth in 2023,” District 2 Charlotte City Council Member Malcolm Graham said. 

Graham believes violence among our youth is fueled by several different factors. He said at times, it can be a lack of parental supervision or how easily accessible guns have become. 

RELATED: 5 teens arrested in Charlotte, face 84 total charges

“Having individuals under 19 having those guns in their hands with no conflict resolution other than pulling the trigger is problematic,” Graham said. 

Graham said they’re working hard to develop solutions to the problem, but teen crime is an issue that will take everyone to solve. 

“We’re calling upon members of the faith community nonprofits, grassroots organizations, and government to see what we can do collectively together,” Graham said. 

Charlotte Mayor Vi Lyles also weighed in with a statement:

“The New Year’s Eve shooting at Romare Bearden Park was horrific and is evident of the continued focus we must have on addressing public safety. My prayers are with the five victims, and I deeply wish for their rapid and full recovery. The trauma inflicted by such incidents is immeasurable and should never be experienced by anyone.

 With the rise of youth gun violence as a national concern, it is increasingly clear that creating a safe, gun-violence-free environment is a collective responsibility we all must share within our own community.  The well-being of our residents and visitors remains our utmost priority, and we are committed to ensuring our city is a safe place for everyone to enjoy.”

Charlotte Center City Partners produced CLT New Year’s Eve at Levine Avenue of the Arts on Tryon Street between MLK and Brooklyn Village Avenue.

There were no incidents at that event, but they also released a statement on the recent incidents from CEO Michael J. Smith: 

“Uptown is the heart of Charlotte, and our community is deeply committed to its safety.

We are proud to have safely hosted a vibrant celebration for the 10,000 Charlotteans and visitors at Levine Avenue of the Arts on Sunday night. It was a celebration of hope and community.

We are deeply concerned by the events in Romare Bearden Park and those affected. We must do better as a community.

We remain committed to hosting highly produced, inclusive, safe, community-building events that are powerful assets for quality of life in Charlotte. As always, we will continue to work closely with our partners at CMPD to plan for, and produce, safe gatherings.”

The latest statistics from CMPD show shootings involving minors were up 32% in 2023 compared to in 2022. Teenagers also make up 70% of auto theft arrests and total juvenile arrests are up 36%.

Meanwhile, this isn’t the first time a violent incident has happened at Romare Bearden Park.

Back in July, 32 people were arrested or cited, after CMPD says a group of teens started fighting during a firework show.

“I think CMPD and the prevention units do a really good job,” Graham said. “But you can’t prevent that right, someone walking in a crowd and discharging a firearm, you can’t check everyone coming to Uptown Charlotte.”  

“We have to start creating programs and creating framework and models that highlight violence as a problem,” Heal Charlotte Founder Greg Jackson said. 

Jackson said something different needs to be done when large crowds gather in Uptown. 

“Who are we going to have out there to help navigate and look around and kind of oversee, from the community, not police officers but people who are from the community,” Jackson said. “They want to make sure that these bigger events, that when we leave everyone is safe, everyone is okay.”

A woman who lives at an apartment complex next to the park told WCNC Charlotte that before the shooting, she saw young people creating chaos, like stopping and jumping on cars.

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In addition to Crawford’s arrest, CMPD said 12 other people – 11 of them juveniles – have been charged for causing disturbances in Uptown.

Officers also seized two guns and charged six of the arrested juveniles’ parents or guardians with contributing to the delinquency of a minor. 

Charges for the additional 12 people include assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill, assault on a government official, going armed to the terror of the public, and resisting arrest, among others.

CMPD also said that two officers suffered minor injuries after being assaulted and another officer was injured after someone threw an “unknown chemical substance” at the officer. 

All five people who were hurt were shot below the knee and are expected to be OK, according to CMPD.

Police are asking anyone who has information about this investigation to call Crime Stoppers at 704-334-1600 or visit the Crime Stoppers website to submit a tip.

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