ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Rochester police has identified the victim of the first homicide of 2022. 14-year-old Julius Greer Jr. was shot in the back and pronounced dead on the scene.
Officials say officers responded to the area of North Street and Herald Street around 6 p.m. for a ShotSpotter activation. Greer is believed to have been going to nearby store to purchase food when he was shot outside.
Authorities say once on scene, officers located the teenager suffering from a gunshot wound.
Police say EMS responded too, but the victim was ultimately pronounced dead at the scene.
Officials say North Street between Wilkins Street and Avenue D was closed to all traffic. Herald Street between Hudson and North is closed as well, police say.
Investigators are working to determine a motive, or if Greer was even the intended target. There was a parked vehicle nearby the store that the shooting occurred at that was also struck by gunfire.
Mayor Malik Evans called for justice Monday.
“So, someone knows who shot a 14-year-old baby. There is someone in this community who is aware of that. And they need to come forward,” says Evans.
Evans called Greer’s parents Monday morning; a task he says was solemn. “…This is heartbreaking,” he says.
Police say Greer was likely going to the ‘Gold More’ store on the corner of North and Herald streets when he was shot in the back. Police say he died inside the store.
“I’m hoping we can put an end to this violence, I don’t know what I can do,” says Aiman Al-Hiyari, who owns the store
Like Evans, he says this is an awful way to open 2022. “This is completely the wrong way to start off with a 14-year-old. My condolences to his family, because I know that kid, too,” he says.
Al-Hiyari says after last year’s 81 murders in 2021, now this, something has to give. “I used to close at 11 o’clock, now I’m closing at 8 o’clock because of what’s been happening in the City! Too many homicides,” he says.
Evans laid out his solutions Monday to combat crime. “We have to get guns off the streets, we have to arrest the most violent offenders, and we have to interrupt disputes before they become violent,” he says.
He says the community owns the challenges when it comes to violence…but that’s a good thing… The community he says also owns the solutions.
“And there’s no community better suited than Rochester when it comes to finding solutions. We’ve done it before, and we’re going to do it again,” says Evans.
Anyone with additional information is asked to please call 911.
It’s Rochester’s first homicide of the new year, after breaking a record in 2021 with 81 homicides last year.