Four teens in a small South Carolina city were killed over the weekend in what a local official described Monday as a “tragic 24 hours.”
Newberry Police Chief Kevin Goodman told reporters that the teens, ages 15 to 19, were found with gunshot wounds Sunday at two locations within a block of each other in the city of about 10,000.
Authorities were still trying to determine whether the shootings were connected. Goodman said Monday that the teens were “at least associates and within the same social circle.”
“As someone who loves the community, someone who loves the youth in this community, I am in disbelief, and I hurt to the core,” he said. “We’re losing our young people at an alarming rate.”
A motive wasn’t yet known, and no suspects have been identified.
MyKain Davis, 16, was found just after midnight Sunday west of downtown Newberry, Goodman said. He died at a local hospital.
Newberry County Coroner Laura Kneece identified the other victims as Jahquindon Toland, 18; Jhisere Robinson, 15; and Sonterrious Davis, 19. They had also been shot, Goodman said.
In a statement Monday, the local school superintendent said two of the victims were former students and two were currently enrolled.
“The Newberry community has been deeply impacted by this weekend’s events, which has led to the loss of four young lives,” Superintendent Alvin Pressley said. “No parent, friend, teacher is ever prepared to face a tragedy like this.”
This story originally appeared on NBCNews.com.