FORT MYERS (CBSMiami) — One after another, more than a dozen kids were loaded up into ambulances. They were shot outside Fort Myers Club Blu as a teen night was wrapping up while parents were picking up their kids early Monday morning.
“I just thank God that my daughter is okay. She could have been shot, her dodging bullets dropping between cars. It’s ridiculous that kids have to go through this,” said a mother.
Fort Myers Police are saying very little, but are trying to calm fears.
“The first thing I want to do is get rid of any thought. This was not an act of terror. Not a terrorist act,” said Fort Myers Police Chief Dennis Eads.
There were a lot of bullets flying. Markers were scattered all over the place along with bullet holes in the building.
Two teens died – 18-year-old Stef’an Strawder and 14-year-old Sean Archilles.
Strawder was a star athlete at Lehigh Senior High.
“I can’t, it’s just too hard. I can’t believe he’s gone.”
His mom is grief-stricken that he’s gone. She warned him when he left home to be alert for trouble.
“If anything go off, hit the floor, find a table, put it up and make sure you stay there until everything is over,” Stephanie White said she told her son. “But it happened out the door so he couldn’t go nowhere.”
Teammates are crushed. Stef’an had big dreams.
“He was heading to the NBA. He wanted it so bad and that’s all he wanted to do in life is play ball,” teammate Jarvis Martin said.
Archilles’ father – Jean – is devastated. He showed CBS4’s Ted Scouten pictures of his son, finding it difficult to talk about his loss.
“One thing I can tell him, I wish him the best wherever he goes with his life. It’s for the best to take him to heaven and rest in peace,” said Jean Archilles.
A cousin of Archilles was in the club with him when the gunfire started. He took off, losing the 14-year-old in the chaos.
“I heard the one bullet and I start running home,” said Archilles’ cousin. “After that, they keep shooting, after that, I run back and I see my cousin on the floor.”
People who live nearby heard the gunfire and saw panicked teens running for their lives.
“I ended up hitting the ground as soon as I heard the shots. It was like 15 gunshots, 20 gunshots back to back like an automatic weapon,” said witness Juan Sentenez.
With two mass shootings in the state in two months, Scouten asked the governor if he had concerns about guns. He said crime in Florida is at its lowest level in 45 years.
“I support the second amendment, the second amendment has never shot anybody, the evil did this,” said Florida Gov. Rick Scott.