© JEFF HARPER/METRO
A K-9 unit searches behind the North Preston Community Centre after a youth was shot on the basketball court on Monday.
NORTH PRESTON - Lionel Beals was tinkering in his backyard in North Preston when he heard the gunshot that seriously injured a teenager just a few doors down on Monday afternoon.
All of the sudden, Beals said, several kids bolted from the North Preston Community Centre basketball court, where police say the shooting occurred at 5 p.m.
“I just heard a boom and a bunch of kids running in all directions, ducking and moving, I thought it was an explosion,” said Beals.
Police have yet to confirm the identity of the 15-year–old male victim who was rushed by ambulance to the IWK Health Centrte.
But the teenager’s aunt Nadine Downey of North Preston spoke to Metro Halifax late Monday night after returning home from the IWK. She said her nephew had pulled through emergency surgery.
Downey said the teenager was on his way to catching the bus when the shooting occurred.
“It’s been very hard on all of us,” said Downey.
Police had taped off an area around the community centre, including the basketball court, and as of 7 p.m. were still in search of the gun with the aid of a K-9 unit.
Downey said her nephew was dedicated and talented boxer who attended Cole Harbour High and was very close to his family.
“He was just a quiet kid, who worked really hard, we’re just very shocked that this has happened.”
Police aren’t confirming many details but said the victim was conscious and talking when he was taken to the IWK.
The shooting remains under investigation.