Bradenton, FL — A Florida man was fatally shot in front of hundreds of people attending a youth football game last week.
The shooting occurred at the 13th Avenue Dream Center on 24th Street East in Bradenton just after 8:00 pm Thursday. Brenton D. Coleman was watching the Manatee Mustangs youth football practice when gunmen ran across the parking lot toward him. Police said the 40-year-old tried to run, but the gunmen pursued him, while shooting at the same time. Coleman was shot and killed as he tried to escape.
Investigators said Coleman lived in the area and has children who participate in the league and were at the field at the time of the shooting. No other injuries were reported. Unfortunately, no one was able to provide police with a description of the gunmen. The Bradenton Police Department believed that most people fled from the center once they heard the gunshots. They are actively searching for witnesses.
“Having that many people here can help us if they speak up and tell us what they saw,” said Lt. James Racky. “We need the community to help us on this one. Somebody knows who did this. We need to bring them to justice.”
Bradenton mother Nadia Miller said she doesn’t believe no one saw anything.
“All these people out here and you’re telling me nobody saw nothing? Nobody saw someone come in this gate? Nobody saw nothing? I don’t believe it,” she said.
Dream Center CEO Patrick Carnegie assured parents and children that the shooting was an isolated event, and that programs at the center are safe.
“It was a targeted incident that could have happened anywhere in the community but unfortunately there are a lot of ills in community and violence and it just happened to happen here,” he said. “But programs are safe. We are working with law enforcement to step up security even more and we will not let negatives upset and change what we do as a community center.”
It is unclear why the men were looking for Brenton D. Coleman, but it is known that he was released from prison a year ago. The Bradenton Police Department is offering a cash reward of up to $1,000 for any information about the case.