Stef’an Strawder, 18, was one of the two victims of the shooting at Club Blu, a Fort Myers, Florida nightclub, early Monday morning. The other victim was 14-year-old Shawn Achilles. Strawder was a high school basketball star at Lehigh Senior High School.
Here’s a look at Strawder and what we know about the shooting.
1. His Sister Was Also Injured in the Shooting
Stephanie White, Strawder’s mother, told The News-Press that Strawder’s 19-year-old sister, Sharrelle, was also at Club Blu. She was shot in the leg, White said.
After the shooting, Strawder was rushed to LEe Memorial Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 3:30 a.m.
“Why him? Why Stef? No matter where he went, everyone invited him into their home like he was their own. People loved him,” White told the News-Press.
Before the party, Strawder asked his friends on Facebook if anyone else was going. Since the shooting, his friends have posted sad emojis on the status.
2. He Was an Offensive Star for Lehigh
Strawder hoped to play Division I college basketball and his high school performances showed that he had the skills. He averaged 15.6 points a game, 5.5 assists and 2.8 steals per game during last season, the News-Press reports. The team went 19-8 and he made the Florida Future Elite 17U team.
One fan posted a tribute to Strawder on an unofficial Lehigh Senior High School Facebook page.
3. The Other Victim Was Just 14 Years Old
The other deceased victim in the shooting was Shawn Achilles, who was just 14 years old. His aunt, Emma Decimus, told WTSP that officials didn’t tell the family Achilles’ condition at first. Achilles died at the scene of the shooting.
“They saw him on the ground. All the other families, they told them the condition of their kids,” Decimus said.
4. Club Blu Was Hosting Teen Night
Club Blu was hosting a teen night Sunday into Monday and said that the shooting took place just as they were about to close. Sixteen people were taken to the hospital, ranging in ages from 12 to 27.
“As the club was closing and parents were picking their children up…..that’s when all this took place. There was nothing more we could of done as you see it was not kids at the party that did this despicable act. Our condolences to all parties involved,” the club wrote in a statement on Facebook.
5. Police Do Not Think the Shooting Was Terror-Related
Police said that they responded to a call at 12:30 a.m., with shooting starting in the club parking lot. Two other scenes – one on Parkway Street and another on Ortiz Avenue – were also linked to the shooting, police said. Two suspects were detained.
Police also issued a statement (seen below) to confirm that it was not an act of terrorirsm.
Fort Myers Mayor Randall P. Henderson, Jr. issued a statement, which reads in part:
Fort Myers is not immune to crime and unfortunately not spared acts of violence and shootings as other cities across the country have experienced. We have watched events like this unfold too many times, but when it occurs in our city, it hits directly to our hearts. The Fort Myers Police Department confirms that this incident is not an act of terror or terrorism. I want to thank our local law enforcement – the Fort Myers Police Department and the Lee County Sheriff’s Office – who responded immediately and were able to apprehend three suspects. It is because of the joint task force between these agencies that was set up last September that they were able to come together so quickly and the suspects are now in custody. This is an example of how this task force has been able to successfully prioritize the health and well-being of our citizens.