• Deputies: Man shot at Orange County park during argument over basketball game

    By: Angela Jacobs


    ORLANDO, Fla. - A 27-year-old father is fighting for his life after being shot Monday at Barnett Park during a fight over a basketball game, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office said.

    Alphonzo Johnson Jr. was shot shortly before 6:15 p.m. at the park near West Colonial Drive, Sheriff's Office spokesman Jeff Williamson said.

    "Upon arrival, deputies report that there were several dozen persons in the park and learned that a fight had broken out at the outdoor basketball court," Williamson said. "The fight made its way to the parking lot area adjacent to the court and escalated."

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    Deputies said several shots were fired.

    Johnson was taken to Orlando Regional Medical Center, where he remains in critical condition.

    "We heard the gunshots, and we saw people running over by the basketball court," park visitor Chad Figgins said. "The next thing we knew, there (were) about six smaller caliber shots fired."

    Johnson’s friend, Antonio Clark, said that he and Johnson organize basketball games at the park to help keep area youth into sports and out of trouble.

    “We have about 50 to 60 people out here every day,” said Clark. “All Alphonzo wanted to do was play basketball, that’s it. Play basketball and have fun, and take care of his kids.”

    Clark said it’s hard to process and the community is heartbroken.

    “It’s real sad right now. Everybody has been up all night,” he said.

    While investigators search for the person who pulled the trigger, Clark remains committed to keeping up the positive mission and competition the basketball courts are supposed to offer.

    No arrests have been made in relation to the shooting. 

    "Unfortunately, things like this go on and it makes me want to get out of this part of town," park visitor Garrett Hallenbeck said.

    The shooting remains under investigation.

    No other details were given.



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