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'She's a baby!' | Panic heard in 911 calls for shooting that left 16-year-old girl dead

The shooting occurred when several young people were at late-night gathering over the weekend at Benjamin E. Mays High School.

ATLANTA — Panic rings through in the 911 calls that were made immediately following a shooting over Memorial Day weekend at Benjamin E. Mays High School on Atlanta's Westside that left a 16-year-old girl dead and another teen hurt.

"We can't leave her, she's a baby!" the caller, who sounds like a young woman, tells a 911 operator. 

The operator had asked if the shooter was still around, advising that police and fire units were on the way and that the girls that can be heard in the call may have to hide.

RELATED: Family pleads with community not to retaliate as police look for suspects in shooting death of 16-year-old

But the girls would not leave the victim, 16-year-old Bre'Asia Powell, while it appeared there was still a chance to save her life.

"There's nobody here with her, we can't leave her!" the caller states in audio recordings that were released to 11Alive.

The shooting happened just before 2:30 a.m. Sunday morning. It appears groups of young people had gathered at the school grounds; it's not clear if there was any specific reason or if they were just hanging out.

Atlanta Public Schools said in a release that two teens were shot “during an unauthorized gathering” at the driveway exiting the school.

The calls show the operator then walked the girls - who the audio indicates did not know Powell - through trying to stop the bleeding.

"Is there bleeding, serious bleeding?" the operator asks.

"Yes, shot in the middle of her chest, she's bleeding in the middle of her chest," the girl responds. "It's hard for her to breathe, she done stop responding."

The operator then advised the girls to get a dry cloth or towel, and place it on the wound down firmly.

"We already did that," they explain.

"Ma'am just keep doing it, without lifting the cloth or towel, don't lift it up," the operator responds.

Once paramedics arrived, Powell was rushed to a nearby hospital where, officials said, she died from her injuries.

More details about the shooting

At a Sunday press conference, Mayor Dickens said the two teens were rising juniors, with Powell expected to work for the City of Atlanta this summer.

"My heart goes out to both families and definitely to the family of the decedent," Dickens said. "This young lady was full of life and was actually expected to start working for the City of Atlanta starting Tuesday on our summer youth employment program."

Dickens, who also attended the high school, urges parents to enroll their children in programs offered through the city's Year of the Youth initiative

The initiative connects kids with after-school programs, internships and nonprofits in the hopes that they'll be less likely to be affected by or involved with gun violence. For more information, click here

Residents' reaction to shooting 

Residents living nearby were saddened to learn about the events that unfolded over the weekend.

"It's almost like what's new but we've got to do something about it," one resident said. "It comes as a shock but that's our youth, that's our future. We've got to do better."

The APD's homicide investigators will handle the case, at the request of APS Police.

Resources for students, parents affected by the shooting

Like Dickens, APS Superintendent Dr. Lisa Herring expressed her condolences for those affected by the shooting.

Herring said that mental health resources are available to students via Telehealth. Hazel Health is available by calling 404-383-6806.

11Alive also recently held a town hall in partnership with Grady Health about how to protect Atlanta's youth from gun violence over the summer months. You can watch the full special below, or streaming now on 11Alive+.

Find more resources at 11Alive.com/ProtectATLyouth.


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