Ribault Middle student shot and killed, 151st homicide of 2022

13-year-old Prince Holland was shot while in a car leaving football practice Saturday, police said. He was one of three homicides reported over the weekend.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — The above video is from a previous, related report.

Sheriff T.K. Waters had a question for Jacksonville as he spoke with the media Saturday, near the spot where a 13-year-old was shot to death earlier that night. 

“Can we please stand together?” he asked. “Can we please fight this problem that we have in our community?”

The child who was killed is Prince Holland. “He was friendly with lots of people,” his father, Sammy Holland, told First Coast News. “He just started attending church every Sunday.” 

Waters, along with Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry, State Attorney Melissa Nelson and community leaders, will speak with the public Monday at 5 p.m. to discuss crime and violence in the city. Bookmark this page to watch live.

Violent Year

Holland’s death marked the 151st homicide in the city in 2022, according to the Florida-Times Union.

With 26 days left in the year, that’s already surpassed last year’s total of 128, which was a sharp decline from 2020, where there were 177 homicides reported.

This will be the 11th-straight year with over 100 homicides in Jacksonville, and the seventh straight year with over 120. 

He was killed while driving home from football tryouts at the Legends Center and Gymnasium, police said, when car pulled up an intersection in the Moncrief area and a gunman “inexplicably” opened fire on the car.

The 21-year-old driver, who police said may be a coach, was injured and was in critical condition Saturday night. An 11-year-old passenger was also reportedly shot and in the hospital in stable condition.

Waters stressed Holland’s innocence and the importance of finding this shooter. “We lost a 13-year-old kid tonight. He was just leaving football practice,” he said. He asked the community to come forward with any information. His message for the shooter: “We’re not gonna rest, we’re gonna work, until we find out who’s responsible.” 

But finding Holland’s killer isn’t the only goal. And Holland’s death is a symptom of the much larger problem with violence in Jacksonville.

A history of ‘bloody weekends’

Holland’s death was reported Saturday night. By 10:45 p.m. Sunday, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office had reported two more homicides in the city. A man was found shot dead at an apartment complex near U.F. Health, police said, and another had been found with gunshot wounds at an industrial building near Downtown Jacksonville.

Violent weekends are a regular occurrence in Jacksonville, often with one in a month. 

In less than 7 hours, between the night of April 30 and the morning May 1, two people were shot dead and a man was fatally stabbed.

Overnight April 16, into the morning of April 17 (Easter Sunday), two were killed and three were wounded within the span of 6 hours.

There were three deadly shootings reported the weekend of March 12 and 13.

Between Saturday, February 5 and Monday, February 7 at 1.a.m., there were eight shootings in the city. Three were between Sunday night and Monday morning. 

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