Richmond community rallies together to support victims, survivors of apartment shooting

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Posted at 3:47 PM, Apr 29, 2021

RICHMOND, Va. -- Community members are rallying together to provide support and donations for the victims and survivors ofTuesday’s mass shooting at the Belt Atlantic apartments.

Sharnez Hill, 30, and her 3-month-old daughter Neziah were two of five people shot at about 6:30 p.m. Tuesday outside the Belt Atlantic apartments on Midlothian Turnpike in South Richmond.

Gunmen sprayed bullets across a courtyard at the apartment complex.

A 29-year-old woman, a 15-year-old girl, and an 11-year-old girl were injured in the shooting and now considered to be in stable condition, Richmond Police Chief Gerald Smith.

Sharnez Hill's aunt has set up a GoFundMe to help pay for their funerals.

Pastor Robin Mines with Taylor's Chapel AME Zion Church in Brodnax has partnered with Love Center Unity of Full Gospel Church on East Broad Rock Road to raise funds for the witnesses and survivors of the shooting.

The funds have so far gone to put survivors in hotel rooms to allow them time away from the neighborhood as they grieve. The organizers are also planning a large meal for the Belt Atlantic community on Saturday, May 8 from Noon to 3 p.m.

Pastor Mines hopes vendors and volunteers step up to help the community during this tragic time.

"What we are doing is bringing some comfort to those who witnessed it," Pastor Mines said. "PTSD is real. This was rough, what they saw was gruesome and children and adults witnessed this sort of thing."

In coordination with the Swansboro West Civic Association and 5th District Councilwoman Stephanie Lynch's office, they have organized "Comforting Arms For Belt Atlantic Families."

For more information, please contact the Swanboro West Civic Association at 804-304-5918.

Local community activist Cruz Sherman has also called on men in the community to rally behind this community.

Sherman hopes at least 100 men will join him at George Wythe High School at 11 a.m. Saturday for his "Men In Action" rally.

"Typically in the African American community there is an absentee of fathers and positive role models. Men have been missing action, so we want to change that narrative and get men involved," he explained. "They need to see there is an alternative and being in solved in dangerous activities."

Sherman said he's already heard from Richmond Sheriff Antionette Irving and Commonwealth's Attorney Colette McEachin who have voiced their support for his weekend rally.

Donald Hemmings, 22, Shyheem Martin, 23, and Shamondrick Perry, 19, were all chargedwith conspiracy to commit murder. Additional charges are pending, according to police.

"Detectives are still trying to determine if other persons were involved in the shootings and are asking the public for information," a Richmond Police spokesperson wrote in an email.

Anyone information was asked to call Major Crimes Detective Russell at (804) 646-7715 or contact Crime Stoppers at 804-780-1000.



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