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Tampa Bay Newspapers 9911 Seminole Blvd., Seminole, FL 33772 Phone: (727) 397-5563 Fax: (727) 397-5900 Submit News
LARGO – Largo police and the city’s park supervisor say that Bayhead Action Park is safe, despite a Sunday night shooting that injured a 17-year-old.
Police responded to a call about a shooting just after 7:30 p.m. July 20 and had identified a suspect by Monday night. According to a media release, police are looking for Rion L. Schofield, 23, wanted in connection with the attempted homicide at the park, 375 Seminole Blvd. Schofield is a black male, about 5 foot 5 inches tall, 160 pounds. He wears prescription glasses.
Schofield is believed to be armed and dangerous. Anyone with information on his location is asked to call the Largo Police Department at 587-6730 and reference case No. 14-006756. The primary investigator is Detective Chris Berard.
According to reports, Schofield rode a female-style beach cruiser bicycle into the park alone that Sunday evening. He started arguing with an unidentified juvenile, who was at the park with some friends. Schofield displayed a gun before riding away, police reported. But as he left, he pointed the gun back toward the group and fired multiple rounds.
One round struck a 17-year-old male in the arm near his wrist. The 17-year-old is a friend of the teenager Schofield was arguing with, said police spokesman Lt. Paul Amodeo.
While detectives are still looking for the shooter, the police department assigned extra details at the complex. The details are in the morning during the city’s summer camp program and in the evening, between 6:30 and 8:30, said Largo parks supervisor Greg Brown.
“I’d like to get to the bottom of this,” Brown said.
A police officer came to speak to campers who returned to the Bayhead Park Monday morning, Brown said. The shooting occurred behind the Bayhead complex building, away from the skate park, he added.
The investigation is still active. Police said the shooting does not appear to be a random event.
“Detectives are following up on some leads,” Amodeo said. “We have (Schofield’s) picture posted everywhere we can.”
A video surveillance camera at the northeast corner of the park monitors activity at the skate park and the basketball courts. City IT staff pulled the footage to be processed for the detectives the morning of July 21 in hopes that the suspect could be spotted in that part of the park before or after the shooting, Brown said. Even early in the investigation, police thought the shooter might have been a regular visitor to the park.
Amodeo said it was department policy to increase patrols of an area after an incident like the shooting. Brown said that Bayhead, including the skate park, was safe for young visitors.
“I still think it’s safe. Absolutely,” Brown said. “It’s disturbing, but I think there were some other circumstances at play.”