HHS student’s life lost to gun violence: Derryanna Davis

Drew ScottRussell, Staff Reporter

On March 24th 2022, a former HHS student, Derryanna (Derry) Davis was shot and killed by a 16-year-old boy in Columbia Heights. Information about her death circulated on various social media platforms, including Snapchat and Instagram. This caused panic within the Hopkins community as news platforms had not yet released comprehensive details regarding her death. 

A few days later on March 31st, Kare 11 released an article discussing the tragedy.

According to the news release, officers from Columbia Heights and Fridley responded to a home in the 3900 block of 3rd St NE in Columbia Heights just before midnight on a report of a shooting. Authorities said first responders attempted lifesaving measures, but the victim was pronounced dead at the scene,” Kare 11 published. 

This situation has been stressful for the HHS community, especially those close to Davis. Purpose Price, an 8th grader at NJH, described her friendship with Davis and how her passing has affected the community. 

“Derry and I were friends,” Price said. “She was a fun, bright person who I loved being around. We weren’t the type of friends who tell every single detail of our lives to each other, but we enjoyed each other’s presence.” 

The lack of acknowledgement and attention from school administration was a major concern throughout the height of this tragic occurrence. 

“Personally I don’t think the district and administration did enough to address this situation,” Price said. “I don’t go to high school, but I haven’t heard of anything for or about Derry. I don’t think that’s how she would have wanted it to go.” Price said

DespiteHHS’s  brief statement addressing Davis’s death, no other schools in the district have had any discussions regarding the situation. This is not a sustainable resolution, especially for Junior High students, as many knew and were friends with Davis, just like Price was. 

Gun violence is on the rise in America, and many students thought that this occurrence was a clear example of the lack of education and progress surrounding gun control.

“We need more awareness surrounding gun control. She didn’t just die, she died from gun violence.” said Price.

Shaymus McLaughlin from Bring Me the News stated, “Some witnesses said the 16-year-old was playing with the gun, swinging it around and pointing it at the group. According to the petition, others said he only ever pointed the gun at Davis. However, another teen worried about the 16-year-old’s behavior with the weapon, took the gun from him, pulled out the magazine and put it on a dresser. But the 16-year-old retrieved it, reloaded it and made a comment suggesting the others should dare him to fire a shot, while pointing it at Davis, the charges allege. That’s when the gun went off, hitting Davis in her upper back. “ 

This type of story reveals the many consequences that come along with a lack of education on gun violence.