PANAMA CITY BEACH — Two teenagers were arrested on felony charges late Wednesday following a paintball attack at a local park.
A third teenager is still at large.
The three are suspected in a paintball attack Monday that occurred
at the Slingshot on Thomas Drive, in which a woman and a man's son were
shot with paintballs.
Deputies responded to the shooting at the skateboard park on the
7400 block of McElvey Road shortly before 10 p.m. and met seven young
skaters, who said three men in a red Suzuki Firenza drove by firing
pink paintballs, according to a Bay County Sheriff's Office incident
Five witnesses and one vehicle were shot, according to Sheriff's Office officials.
Two of the victims reportedly pursued the shooters in their own
vehicle and the suspects' vehicle allegedly attempted to "side-swipe"
the victim's vehicle. The driver-side window of the victim's SUV also
was knocked out.
As deputies took suspect descriptions from witnesses, a vehicle
matching the description of the suspects' began to drive toward the
deputies' location, "then turned around and accelerated toward Thomas
Drive," the report said.
The deputy pursued the vehicle toward Hathaway Bridge where it made a left turn on Buck Lane, the report said.
Off a trail at the end of the road, the deputy found 17-year-old
Geremy Tevin Miller, of Springfield, and 15-year-old Detorius Raheem
Rivers, of Callaway, inside the vehicle, according to a Bay County
Sheriff's Office press release.
Paintball guns were reportedly discovered in the woods nearby, and paintball and CO2 cartridges were found inside the vehicle.
Miller was arrested on charges of principle to aggravated battery
for allegedly driving the car during the Monday shooting, and
aggravated battery for allegedly firing a paintball gun at the victims
during the Wednesday shooting. Rivers was charged with principle to
aggravated battery in connection with the Wednesday shooting.
A third suspect, Vincent Lamar Harris, is believed to have fled into
the woods before the deputy reached the vehicle Wednesday. Harris is
wanted on two counts of aggravated battery, according to the release.
Dan Sperry, a founding member of the World Paintball Union, said
using paintball equipment in destructive and illegal ways is dangerous
and does not represent the sport.
"People that use (paintball guns) to do ‘drive-bys' are just deviants," Sperry said in an e-mail.