County wants to close private park where shooting killed 2


SANDERSVILLE, Ga. (AP) — Officials in a rural Georgia county said they would file a nuisance lawsuit to shut down a private park where a May shooting at a music festival killed two people and caused a scuffle.

Washington County officials told local media they want a judge to order the Larry Mitchell Ball Park closed ahead of a scheduled July event.

The May shooting killed 17-year-old William Mykell Lowery and 30-year-old Christopher “Scooter” Dunn. The pair were attending a Freaknik-themed music festival at the park. No one has been arrested yet, although Washington County Sheriff Joel Cochran recently said some suspects have surfaced in the investigation.

On Thursday, Washington County commissioners heard from more than two dozen people complaining about the park near Sandersville.

Kenneth Spikes, whose backyard faces the park, said people had run to his house looking for shelter.

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“Three people ran into the house and they were down – they were bloody, their legs and everything,” Spikes said. “That lady said she could come on the porch, so we left them on the porch and everything.”

Others said there were too many people in the park, which has limited access. Witnesses said the crowded event had little security and no one checked for weapons.

“Over the past few years, it’s gotten ridiculous with all the traffic and noise and all the park issues,” the Washington County Sheriff’s Sgt. Rudy Grant

Cochran said the Washington County attorney would seek a temporary shutdown order and then a permanent order.

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