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GBI: Teen shot by Cobb officer after fighting inside Six Flags on opening day

David Aaro, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on

Published in News & Features

A 15-year-old boy is in critical condition after being shot by police outside Six Flags Over Georgia Saturday evening after a large “unruly crowd” allegedly caused chaos inside the park on its opening day for the season, officials said.

At about 6:15 p.m., Cobb police responded to assist with crowd control at the park’s entrance after several fights broke out among guests as they were leaving, according to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation. Police said they helped Six Flags security with the crowd that had swelled to between 500 to 600 people who were “running through the park and fighting.”

Officers and security personnel followed them out of the park and onto Six Flags Parkway near South Service Road, police said. At some point, several people opened fire, striking an unoccupied patrol vehicle, the state agency added.

“As officers identified where the shots were coming from, they ran after people who had run into the woods,” the GBI stated. “During the incident, one CCPD officer fired his weapon, hitting one minor.”

Officials said a handgun was found near the injured teenager, who was given medical aid on scene before being taken to Grady Memorial Hospital. His identity was not released, and police have not said if he will face charges. No officers were injured during the incident.

In a statement, the park said the shooting did not occur on its property or parking lot.

“This took place on South Service Road that is not owned or operated by Six Flags,” the statement read. “However, we join our community and the Atlanta region in our commitment to safety and security. We won’t put up with that type of activity here.”

 

It was the second year in a row that fighting was reported inside the park on the first day of the season. Last March, a parkgoer, Justin Clayton, told Channel 2 Action News that he and his family saw multiple groups of teenagers get into fights. In a statement released to the media after that incident, Six Flags said it removed the young people who engaged in fights.

“Unfortunately, several groups of young people decided to engage in inappropriate behavior in more than one area of the park,” the statement added. “Their actions disrupted the park experience for our guests and violated our park policies. ... We have absolutely no tolerance for inappropriate behavior. Safety for our guests, and our team members, is our foremost priority. Unruly behavior will not be tolerated.”

The GBI will conduct an independent investigation into Saturday’s gunfire. Afterward, the case file will be given to the Cobb County District Attorney’s Office for review.

The incident was the 11th officer-involved shooting the state agency has been asked to investigate in 2024. At this point last year, the GBI had opened investigations into 16 such shootings.

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©2024 The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Visit at ajc.com. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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