A day later, parents return to scene of shooting at MLK park

Posted at 11:01 PM, Oct 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-13 06:52:24-04

LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — One day after a shooting at Martin Luther King Park in Lexington prompted parents and kids to flee in terror, families returned to the park to discuss what happened and what comes next.

"[The shooting] took their innocence away," said Aerielle Washington, whose son plays for a recreation football league in the park. "And there's no turning back from that."

Speaking through tears, Washington described the moments when she heard the gunshots and saw two people shooting at each other.

"I ran to the park where my daughter was," she said. "Regardless of the bullets, my job was to protect those kids. And I feel like that has been taken from me."

Washington said that her children, 11 and six, have had trouble processing what happened Monday.

"My son repeatedly said, 'I'm gonna die,'" she said. "My daughter just says, 'I'm scared.'"

Washington was one of several parents who came to the park Tuesday, along with coaches for the MLK Broncos and community advocates.

Holding an informal meeting, they floated ideas as to how to keep the children in the park safe going forward.

"We just need some extra security or something out here," said Adero Jones, the activity coordinator for the Broncos booster club.

Washington told LEX 18 that she is not sure what comes next, but she is tired of just talking about it.

"There's a lot of questions," Washington said. "'What can we do? What should we do? How do we solve this? What needs to happen?' But no one collectively is coming together for a solution."

Lexington police told LEX 18 Monday night that one person was found with gunshot wounds near the park. They said he was taken to the hospital with what was described as non-life-threatening injuries.

No arrests have been made.