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Father of 17-year-old Shooting Victim Speaks Out

TOBYHANNA TOWNSHIP — Less than one week ago, a 17-year-old girl was shot in the head in Coolbaugh Township.

Tuesday night, the Pocono Mountain Regional Police, the agency investigating the shooting, hosted National Night Out at Blanche Price Park, near the Tobyhanna Township Municipal Building.

The event raises awareness about crime prevention. It’s a night that the father of the shooting victim says he’s thankful is taking place, especially now.

“She’s a normal 17-year-old girl. An honor student, likes to hang out with her friends,” said the father of the shooting victim.

Police say last week, the man’s daughter was shot in the head during a drug deal right outside A Pocono Country Place. Police say the shooter, Dominique Smith, 17, of Tobyhanna, led police on a four-hour long foot chase through the woods. Smith is now facing attempted homicide charges.

“I’m sure that guy’s life is ruined forever,” said the shooting victim’s father.

The father of the victim says he can’t thank Pocono Mountain Regional Police enough for all they did.

“They did an awesome job. Their commitment and efforts were non-stop,” said the father, “They should be commended for it, all the officers that were involved. I can’t thank them enough.”

National Night Out is a nationwide event where local law enforcement interacts with the communities they serve. Pocono Mountain Regional Police bring families together and giving them all kinds of information, like how to dial 911, the police show them what the SWAT Team does and most importantly, explains to families how to avoid being victims of crime.

“Crime is not only a police issue. It’s a community issue. We stress having strong family relationships. We also want our parents to work with their kids and know where their kids are going,” said Pocono Mountain Regional Police Chief Harry Lewis.

That advice is something the victim’s father agrees with. The man says his daughter was with her friends at the time. But unfortunately, as the police say, the girl was just at the wrong place at the wrong time.

“A circumstance like this, there were some people at the wrong place at the wrong time. Even though there was some criminal activity involved with it, there were some people that were just innocent bystanders. And unfortunately one was the victim in this crime,” said Chief Lewis.


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