The teen accused of wildly firing shots inside a crowded club in Baker, killing three, had been undergoing faith-based counseling at the behest of the parish’s anti-gang task force, according to a pastor who worked with him.
The Rev. Donald Hunter Sr., pastor of New Beginning Baptist Church and founder of the Black Family Initiative, said a licensed counselor with the Black Family Initiative had been working with Nakeydran Williams since the beginning of March and the teen had been responding well.
“He is a young man that none of us would have suspected would have ended up in this situation,” Hunter said.
The Black Family Initiative is a coalition of pastors and community leaders working to address issues such as juvenile crime in north Baton Rouge.
Williams previously attended six months of counseling with the Black Family Initiative at the request of the Office of Juvenile Services in 2012, Hunter said.
Hunter said that because Williams is a minor, he could not get into the specifics of Williams’ counseling, including the reason the Baton Rouge Area Violence Elimination Project recommended Williams to the Black Family Initiative.
But Hunter said everyone in the 3-year-old Black Family Initiative who dealt with Williams was shocked when they learned of his arrest in the March 28 shooting at the Baker Civic Club.
The shooting left three teens — Marcell Franklin, 15, Kendal Dorsey, 15, and Diontrey Claiborne, 18 — dead. A fourth teen, 19-year-old Javaughn Simmons, was shot in the jaw and is recovering.
“Our counselor … did not see this coming, nor did any other of the officials who were working with the young man,” Hunter said.
Hunter praised the initiative Williams took in his treatment, saying the teen did things — such as contacting his counselor and asking what he needed to do to move forward with his treatment — that many of the other teens receiving counseling through the program would not do.
Hunter said it is not uncommon for BRAVE to refer teens to the initiative for individual counseling.
Source: The Advocate | RYAN BROUSSARD – [email protected]