by: Tina Terry Updated:
SALSIBURY, N.C. - The mother of a Salisbury High School freshman told Channel 9 on Tuesday she's thankful her son is alive after he was shot on the school's campus.
Channel 9 has followed every new development since the shooting after classes let out Monday.
The gymnasium where the shooting happened is toward the back of the school’s parking lot.
The victim’s mother said she wants to know how the gunman, who doesn’t go to the school, was able to get on campus and shoot her son.
"No words can describe how grateful I am, because I could be sitting here because I don't have my son,” said mother Kim Williams.
Shaleek Williams, 16, was on heavy medication to numb the pain from the shooting.
Williams said he was in the gymnasium with other students waiting for a ride home. That's when he says a group of people who don't go to his school stormed the gym and picked a fight with a group of students.
"He was trying to be a mediator as always and break up a fight between people that he knew,” said Kim Williams.
Police said Dajuan Russell, 17, a teen who used to attend Salisbury High, was among the intruders. Police said Russell pulled out a gun and shot Williams.
Salisbury police said they added five more officers to the campus Tuesday and they’re evaluating whether the school needs more long-term security enhancements.
Russell faced a judge Tuesday and learned he could serve about 30 years in jail if convicted. It’s a reality that’s hard to bear for his family members.
"That's my baby. That's my son. I have raised him since he was like 6 years old, so it's very hurtful. It's very hurtful,” said Russell’s aunt Shenita Russell.
Williams said Tuesday he believes the fight was gang-related. When Channel 9 asked police, they said they wouldn’t confirm and they’re still investigating a motive.
Mother of victim wants answers after shooting at high school
Driver caught after running into woods following I-85 chase
Trump administration set to lift federal transgender bathroom guidelines
Troopers identify 22-year-old woman killed in Catawba County crash
Pilot radioed in 'Mayday' call before Australian plane crash