CHARLOTTE, N.C. - Police arrested three teenagers after they said three high schoolers were injured in a shootout outside a Family Dollar store in east Charlotte Tuesday afternoon.
Police responded to the store on Milton Road, not far from North Sharon Amity Road, after 4 p.m.
Police released the 911 calls from the shooting on Wednesday.
One caller said, "When I went to the door there were three guys walking in the parking lot. Next thing I know, he pulls out a gun shooting across the street at the Family Dollar."
"I just heard gunshots, and as I was looking at the Advance Auto Parts, I seen somebody throw two guns in a tree," another caller said.
Chopper 9 Skyzoom flew over the area and saw crime scene tape with several patrol cars in the parking lot.
Paramedics headed to the scene after multiple reports of shots fired in and around the area.
Chopper 9 saw a vehicle that appeared to have its windows shot out, and there was someone being loaded into an ambulance. The high schoolers were inside that car, officials said. All three were hit by gunfire.
Police also responded to an apartment complex off Barrington Drive, less than a quarter of a mile away from the Family Dollar.
Paramedics said two patients were taken to the hospital with serious injuries from the Family Dollar. Officials said a third patient was also taken to the hospital with serious injuries from the scene on Barrington Drive.
Police said it appears the victim on Barrington Drive ran there for help after the shooting outside the store.
"The first thing going on in my mind, ‘What's going on? My husband lives in this area. He catches the bus.’ That's what my concern was," resident LaQuana Jones said.
Officers said the victims and the suspects are high school-aged and had arranged to meet up for a drug deal.
Arrested were 17-year-old Matthew Morgan, a 15-year-old and a 14-year-old.
Police said the younger two, who are not being named because they are juveniles, approached the car and tried to rob the victims before shooting. They were charged with armed robbery, felony conspiracy, assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury and attempted murder.
Morgan, a student at Cox Mill High School, was charged with possession of Schedule IV drugs and possession of marijuana.
"We're very lucky that there were no more serious injuries out here," Koch said.
Police said everyone involved was from Rowan or Cabarrus counties.
"I keep saying, we’re putting our youth in danger when we don’t secure weapons,” said Charlotte-Mecklenburg police Chief Kerr Putney.
"It's in school, it's everywhere we go, so it’s very uncomfortable,” said Suize Borrego, a parent of a Cox Mill student.
Investigators said charges against Morgan weren’t more serious because there are some self-defense elements involved and that the people in his car shot back after they were fired upon.
Check back for updates on this developing story.
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