PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A young life was lost to gun violence as Philadelphia police continue to search for the suspect who shot and killed a teenager at a Port Richmond park. Just before 10 p.m. on Wednesday, 19-year-old Anthony Cheever was killed by gunfire.
“He made everybody laugh, he was always happy and he worked hard, he didn’t deserve this,” Cheever’s mother, Jamie Smith, said.
Loved ones reacted to the shooting death of the teenager, who was hanging out with a friend inside Campbell Square Park in Port Richmond when the shooting happened.
Both boys were shot, police say. Cheever’s 16-year-old friend was struck in his thigh and was rushed to a local hospital, but is expected to survive.
Cheever was shot in his chest and died a short time later.
“We’re not entirely certain of the motive at this point,” Philadelphia Police Capt. Sekou Kinebrew said.
“It doesn’t matter where you go or what you’re doing, it’s a disgrace,” family friend Jon Pruna said. “It’s terrible, it’s no regard for human life anymore.”
Shell casings were left behind in the same park where friends say Cheever grew up playing.
“I’ve known him since I was in third grade. He’s not a bad person, he always worked and did what he was supposed to do, then occasionally came to hang out with his friends,” Brittany Utter said. “It’s just crazy because you don’t think it can happen to people you know.”
Investigators believe the shooting was related to a fight that happened earlier in the day Wednesday.
“What we’re not entirely sure of is if the homicide is related to those fights, so we are trying to nail that down,” Kinebrew said.
Cheever’s mother visited the site where her son was killed and she says she just wants answers.
“I just want anybody that has information to come forward, I don’t want retaliation, Anthony would not want that,” she said.
CBS3’s Chantee Lans reports.