‘We do know it’s gang-related,’ Jacksonville leader says, in reference to deadly teen shooting

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Parents are on high alert following a deadly shooting near First Coast High School in Oceanway. A city leader who serves the district where the incident happened said it’s gang-related.

“We do know it’s gang-related,” Councilman Reggie Gaffney said. “Given what the Sheriff’s department told me.”

One teenager is dead and four others are hurt. Six minors total were in the car that was shot on Tuesday.

MAD DADS identified the teen who died as 17-year-old Kaleb Floyd.

RELATED STORY: 1 teen dead, 4 others injured after car was shot into in North Jacksonville

“We have to pray for our city and our children,” Chantel Long, said. She pulled up at dismissal to make sure her son, who is a senior, got to his car ok. “I’m just trying to come here to make sure my son is getting to his car safely, and making it home safely.”

Other parents didn’t even want to send their children to school. A mother who didn’t want to be identified sent Action News Jax reporter, Meghan Moriarty, a message that said, “Spring break is next week and then we will see what the school puts out as far as a plan and determine if my child will return.”

Councilman Gaffney of the 7th district said this shooting is possibly connected to a shooting last week that injured a 16-year-old student.

“We believe — I believe — I’ve been told that it may be retaliation on what happened a week ago,” Gaffney said.

There was also a gun confiscated on campus Tuesday, but the district cannot confirm the incidents are related. However, the school principal sent out this message to parents on Tuesday:

Good Afternoon First Coast High families, this is Principal Fluent calling.

I think it’s important to make you aware as parents of a security concern that occurred just before school dismissed for the day. Our staff and security teams safely confiscated a loaded firearm on our campus. It was thanks to tips from students that we learned the firearm was on campus. At this time, law enforcement is investigating, and a student has been taken into custody. Appropriate action including criminal charges and school discipline will take place. As grateful as I am that this has been resolved, I am always disappointed to call you all with this type of news. Please help us keep First Coast High School safe. Monitor your children’s possessions and what they may be bringing to school. Please also talk with them about the serious consequences that can result from bringing a firearm or weapon on campus. Remind them of the importance of saying something if they see something, just like the students did today. I appreciate their actions, and I appreciate your support as well. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at the school. Thank you.

STORY: Jacksonville Beach police looking for Ford F-150 that may be connected to father’s killing

Later that afternoon, when the shooting occurred, the principal sent out this message:

Good Afternoon First Coast High School families,

This is Principal Fluent with a follow-up to my earlier phone call this afternoon. We are aware of tragic acts of violence taking place in our surrounding area. While these events are not taking place on our campus, we will have enhanced security measures for the near future as a precaution. Again, we will be taking enhanced security measures for the near future in light of the acts of violence taking place in our area. Thank you for your understanding and partnership. We look forward to seeing your child at school tomorrow.

Gaffney is calling on parents to lock up their firearms.

“Please lock your gun up at night,” Councilman Gaffney said. “You are actually making it easier for one of these young kids to get a gun, and hurt somebody else.”

In 2022, there have been 114 firearms stolen from cars, according to the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office.

If you know anything about this deadly shooting, please call the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office or you can leave an anonymous tip with Crime stoppers at 866-845-TIPS.