17-Year-Old Found Shot, Killed In Spring Garden

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – An entire neighborhood gathered near a wall at 7th and Green Streets in Spring Garden Saturday night. It’s the same wall where police found the body of Dwayne Ballard Jr.

“That’s my son,” said Dwayne Ballard. “I loved him. I took care of him. It’s just sad.”

The victim’s father said, his son grew up in the area where he was shot and killed.

“He liked to play basketball,” said Ballard. “That was like his number one thing.”

His friends who played basketball with the Delaware Valley High School hoops star, signed a ball in Ballard’s memory and placed it near his favorite shoes.

Friends and family posted several pictures of Ballard and posters with RIP messages, near the wall where the 17-year-old was killed.

“He was playful and he was loving,” said one friend.

Youth Director Adam Bruckner from Helping Hand Rescue Mission says he remembers seeing Ballard around the neighborhood.

“He let his basketball game do the talking for him,” said Bruckner. “He was incredibly well respected in this neighborhood.

Right now police are looking into a possible motive. They say just after midnight, officers found Ballard on the ground with one gun shot to his back. Investigators say the shot likely came from a someone driving a car.

“My message for these young kids is do whatever they need to do to straighten their life out,” said the victim’s father. “Do better and don’t let something like this happen again.”

Watch the video…

Reported by Jericka Duncan, CBS 3

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  • Shahidah

    I just cant believe my brother is going . he was everything to me! he helped me when i needed it. Like i llove him!. I remember i got my first d on my report card and he beat me up so bad that i kept my grades up for the rest of the year! Wayne was there for me no matter what! Ily Wayne- Wanye and i will never forget you!
    Love (lil head) Shahidah!

  • kris

    Very Sad..I actually know this victims uncle, and my heart pours out to him and his family & i know that they have religion and thats the best thing that can comfort them in this time of sadness. I knew this boy at a young age and he was a good kid. I think that its awful that today our youth are killing 1 another over the simpliest things, they have no value for life and family..I dont understand why ppl think they can take a life that they havent created, that’s only GOD’s given ability. and when you commit such a act, u will be judged accordingly.This tragedy has caused me a great deal of sadness. R.I.P WAYNE-WAYNE

  • bc

    To these inner-city hoodlums taking a life is like changing their underwear. A perceived slight or disrespectful comment warrants a death sentence. Add to this the mix of money and drugs and you have a lethal concoction. Guns take the place of words in disputes and confrontations. Once you pull the trigger you can’t call the bullet back. All those who do these murders are apprehended eventually, and spend their youth – and life – in prison. I don’t get it. Why?

  • mutt

    could have been blood initiation night, where they pick a random person and murder them. personally we need to have a zero tolerance policy about violence, especially murder…no life in jail, no special privilege. we need to bring back the gallows.

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