EAST ST. LOUIS, Ill. – The mayor of East St. Louis reacts to the shooting at a church in his city this past weekend.
Police say two teenagers who were visiting the Pilgrim Green Missionary Church got into an argument in a church annex used for dining.
Police say both the 16-year-old and 18-year-old pulled guns and opened fire. The 18-year-old was critically injured. The 16-year-old was killed.
A 54-year-old bystander and church member was also wounded in the shooting but is expected to survive.
“Anytime someone has disregard of human life, and they are going to take these matters into their own hands, what are we saying when our youth are stooping to this level, to be so violent inside a church sanctuary, to do these things, it’s just disheartening,” Mayor Robert Eastern said.
Police say they have talked to witnesses and the families of those wounded. They have yet to speak with the 18-year-old and the 54-year-old.
Mayor Eastern says the whole incident is just shocking.
“This is just not our city; it’s people in general, cause this can happen anywhere, you know? It just happens to happen here in the city of East St. Louis, but what is that saying about what are we teaching our kids how to do conflict resolution,” he said. “It has to be a better way than picking up a gun, especially inside of a church.”