Parents, children react to recent Greensboro shooting- ‘They want to be kids’

GREENSBORO, N.C. -- People who live in Benjamin Benson St. in Greensboro are still reeling after a man was shot and killed outside an apartment in the middle of the day.

Several of the people who saw what happened were kids playing outside and the community is troubled by their children witnessing so much violence.

"You don't come outside and think that you're going to have to run from bullets," said Stephanie McLendon. "Your kids just want to play. They want to be kids."

Nine-year-old D'Asia Brown knows what violence in her neighborhood sounds like.

"That's when I just heard, 'Pew, pew, pew, pew, pew," she said.

Police say Adrian Lamont Hickman, 34, shot and killed Charles Edward Smith, Jr. outside of an apartment on Benjamin Benson Street around 12:25 p.m. on Monday.

Neither Hickman nor Smith live in that neighborhood. Police say Hickman also shot Yolanda Michelle Rogers, 28, who was released from the hospital.

Police say Smith was Hickman's intended target.

Another victim is still in serious condition after a shooting in the same neighborhood earlier this month.

Police are worried.

"This has been a really troubling trend for us with violent crime," said Greensboro Police Capt. Nathaniel Davis.

The community is too.

"You can't come out after dark because if you do this in the sunlight, why would you think they're not going to do it at nighttime?" said Taleigh Brown.

Thirteen-year-old Taleigh sees the impact the repeated violence has on her younger siblings.

"The fact that there's little children out here like, really little, running around everywhere it's kind of scary for them," she said.

As the older sister, falling into a cycle of violence is her biggest fear.

"When they grow up, what if they think it's okay? And it's not," Taleigh said.

"Despite everything that happens here, this is not a bad neighborhood," McLendon said. "This is not the only face that it has."

McLendon didn't want to show her face, but she does want people to see past the neighborhood's reputation for violence.

"The people that stay here are really good people. They look out for each other," she said.

She says most people are working to set things right.

"There only so much a police can do. When you have no respect for authority, police is not going to matter," McLedon said. "It starts in the home. You have to teach your kids discipline. You have to teach them that there is no right in taking a life. Nobody wins."

This marked Greensboro's 19th homicide this year. Last year, there were 39 homicides in Greensboro.