TEACHABLE MOMENT: Huntsville dad using skate park shooting as lesson for young son

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) -- Monday afternoon as the sun beat down on the smooth concrete inside Lydia Gold Skatepark, a father calmly explained to his son how violence is not the answer.

The skate park was host to a violent shootout between two men Sunday evening. The two men chose to pull guns, resulting in a hail of gunfire.  One of them was rushed to the hospital with a gunshot wound.

The incident is spurring discussion with many in the skate boarding community who WHNT spoke with Monday.

"This is typically an inclusive place where even if you are not that good, everyone gets along and shares the space," David Sosebee says.

Weapons are banned in all Huntsville city parks. (WHNT, Matt Kroschel)

Weapons are banned in all Huntsville city parks. (WHNT, Matt Kroschel)

Sosebee told his 9-year-old son, Aidan, turning to violence is a coward's way out of a problem.

"I want to teach my son understanding and patience," Sosebee added.

Police say Sunday evening, when the shooting took place, young kids were at the skate park and witnessed the incident.

Huntsville Police Chief Lewis Morris says his department has security protocols in place to keep people safe at city parks. But the security does not include any closed circuit security monitoring, something many viewers have indicated may be a good idea in the wake of this shooting.

According to a city ordinance, having a weapon inside any city park is strictly prohibited.

Police are still investigating this incident and charges are pending in the case.



  • Tim Newman

    The city’s ordinance is null and void.

    13A-11-61.3 Regulation of firearms, ammunition, and firearm accessories.
    (c) Except as otherwise provided in Act 2013-283 or as expressly authorized by a statute of this state, the Legislature hereby occupies and preempts the entire field of regulation in this state touching in any way upon firearms, ammunition, and firearm accessories to the complete exclusion of any order, ordinance, or rule promulgated or enforced by any political subdivision of this state.

    (d) The authority of a political subdivision to regulate firearms, ammunition, or firearm accessories shall not be inferred from its proprietary authority, home rule status, or any other inherent or general power.

    (e) Any existing orders, ordinances, or rules promulgated or enforced contrary to the terms of this section are null and void and any future order, ordinance, or rules shall comply with this section.

    • Nuclear Mike

      Again, Ch19 has not done their “homework” in providing accurate & correct background information to their reporting of ordinances & laws when being applied to their supposition for the basis of their statements…causing wrongly assumed actions of the Public.

      • Tim Newman

        Jennie, what I posted is the relevant portion of the state’s gun laws. Cities and Counties have NEVER had the legal status in this state to pass any gun laws that were not consistent with the state law. That was recodified in 2013 to make it more clear. If it is not expressly allowed under current state law, cities may not pass an ordinance, rule, policy, or order that has anything to do with guns.

  • mrbthatsme

    Seems to me a reporter or at least a reporters boss would want accurate reporting. How can one trust a news organization that reports falsely?

    Maybe a retraction? I doubt it!

  • LJ

    As Tim posted, if there is such a city ordinance, it is illegal. But the salient point is that even if the city had the authority, criminals will continue to carry guns and use them, while law-abiding citizens will be denied the right to defend themselves. If this does not give you pause, it should.

  • Nuclear Mike

    “Sunday’s shooting happened around 8 p.m. after a father confronted another man who was taking pictures of scantily-clad women. The father, Kevin Weil, told AL.com Tuesday that the man with the camera became irate and threatened to kill everyone at the park with a large, semiautomatic pistol that he grabbed from his vehicle.”

    The activities of the skate park has always drawn the attention of those who are not so savory as many of us who use the Dog Park have observed for years…cameras will only record the activities, not stop anything like this.

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