She didn’t see the shooter. But Bridgett Ohiembor heard the boom and knew immediately she’d been hit as she rode in the backseat of her friend’s SUV.
“I just felt this pain in my leg,” Ohiembor told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “My leg was on fire.”
The 22-year-old Ohio woman told her friends to take her immediately to an emergency room. At Piedmont Hospital, doctors found a bullet lodged in Ohiembor’s hip that mercifully missed a major vein or artery.
“That bullet could have easily hit my head or my heart and it would have been over,” she said.
Atlanta police believe Ohiembor was the victim of road rage on I-75 near Edgewood Avenue in the early morning hours of April 25. She’s among the victims of at least 16 shootings so far this year on metro Atlanta interstates and roads. Five people have been killed, others injured.
Investigators believe many of the shootings, including several that have been deadly, may have been the result of driving disputes. In many cases, the shooters drive away before witnesses have enough information to help police track them down. No arrests have been made in a majority of the cases.
Most recently, a man was critically injured after being shot multiple times and crashing his car on U.S. 78 in DeKalb County, according to police. Shortly before 5 p.m. Tuesday near North Druid Hills Road, police responded to a call about a wreck but arrived to find a man inside the car with multiple gunshot wounds. Investigators do not believe the incident was the result of road rage.
But early Saturday, one Athens man was killed and another injured in an apparent road-rage shooting on Ga. 316 in Barrow County. Barrow deputies responded to a 911 call shortly after midnight and discovered two men shot inside a car near the westbound lanes, GBI spokeswoman Nelly Miles said in a news release. Ketravian Tyvon Cole, 20, had been shot multiple times near Jackson Trail Road and was pronounced dead at the scene.
Most of the shootings have happened near downtown Atlanta, but some have been reported on suburban roads, including in Gwinnett, Clayton, Paulding and Coweta counties.
The year’s first interstate shooting death happened Jan. 4.
Around 12:30 p.m. that day, a driver was found shot inside his car on I-20 West at Capitol Avenue, according to Atlanta police. An officer at the scene found the man sitting in the driver’s seat with a gunshot wound to his head. The driver, 32-year-old Ernesto Anderson, was unconscious but still breathing when he was taken to the hospital, according to police. The father of four died the following day.
In February, four more shootings were reported on Atlanta roads. Two people were killed in separate incidents, including 33-year-old Solomon Howard and 28-year-old Jarmel Jowers.
Credit: JOHN SPINK / AJC
Credit: JOHN SPINK / AJC
On Feb. 11, a Grammy-nominated songwriter and rapper from Atlanta said he was chased and shot while driving, causing him to crash his Bentley.
Cydel Charles Young, 36, also known as Cyhi the Prynce, posted a lengthy account of the incident on Instagram, saying “there was an attempt on my life.” His narrative was largely confirmed by an Atlanta police report obtained by the AJC.
Young was taken to Grady Memorial Hospital with a minor injury to his hand, police said.
“I was born and raised in Atlanta, GA, and I have tremendous love for my city ... but it’s chaotic out here,” Young wrote in the Instagram post. “So everyone that’s in Atlanta right now, please protect yourself, stay out the way and be careful, because it could all be over in a split second.”
On March 5, a Houston rapper was fatally shot on I-85 in Gwinnett County, according to police.
Chucky Trill, whose legal name was Corey Detiege, was found shot inside a vehicle near the Jimmy Carter Boulevard exit about 3 a.m. and later died at a hospital. He was 33. According to Gwinnett police spokesman Cpl. Collin Flynn, investigators believe the shots were fired into Detiege’s car from another vehicle.
“Obviously these types of shootings are very concerning for the police department,” Flynn said. “Not only do you have the two vehicles involved in the shooting, but you also have multiple people that are driving on the interstate that could also be victims in these types of crimes.”
An hour before Trill was shot, a man was shot and injured on I-75 in Clayton County, according to police.
On April 3, the assistant general manager for Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q, Jason Phillips, was on his way to work about 3 p.m. when a man driving a white Nissan Maxima cut him off. Phillips then heard gunshots and realized he’d been hit in the leg. He was treated for his injuries at Grady.
“They told me I was extremely lucky,” Phillips said. “Two inches higher and it would have gotten an artery. Any lower and it would have got a bone.”
Also in April, roadway shootings were reported in both Coweta and Paulding counties. In Coweta, investigators arrested a woman’s coworker two days after she was shot while driving on I-85. No arrests have been made in the Paulding case, where investigators believe a dispute between people in two vehicles led to shots being fired, striking a third car April 22.
Ohiembor, the victim injured in the shooting on I-75 near Edgewood Avenue, isn’t sure police will ever be able to catch the man who drove close to her friend’s SUV and flashed his lights before firing a shot. She had the bullet removed from her hip earlier this week and she’s hoping to send it to an Atlanta detective as evidence.
“Whether they get caught or not, I’m at peace that I’m still alive,” she said. “But I do want them to get caught.”
At least 15 shootings have been reported this year on metro Atlanta interstates and roadways:
Jan. 4: Around 12:30 p.m., a driver was found shot inside his car on I-20 West at Capitol Avenue.
Feb. 1: A Clayton County man was arrested after he allegedly fired multiple shots at another driver on I-75.
Feb. 10: A double shooting on I-85 in Midtown left one man dead and another injured.
Feb. 11: A Grammy-nominated songwriter and rapper, Cydel Charles Young, was chased and shot while driving.
Feb. 25: A man was found shot to death inside his vehicle on I-20 in downtown Atlanta.
March 5: Houston rapper Chucky Trill was fatally shot on I-85 in Gwinnett County. An hour earlier, a man survived after being shot while on I-75 in Clayton County.
March 6: A man was grazed by a bullet on I-285 in DeKalb County.
April 2: A 29-year-old man was shot while driving on I-20 in southwest Atlanta.
April 3: The assistant general manager for Fox Bros. Bar-B-Q was shot on I-20 near the Downtown Connector.
April 20: A woman told Coweta County deputies that a man in a ski mask shot her on I-85.
April 22: Paulding County investigators believe a dispute between people in two vehicles led to shots being fired, striking a third car on Macland Road.
April 25: An Ohio woman visiting Atlanta was shot while in the backseat of a friend’s SUV on I-75 around 2 a.m.
April 29: Investigators believe an Atlanta man was shot in the stomach as he attempted to exit I-20 westbound near downtown Atlanta.
Saturday: One Athens man was killed and another injured in a shooting on Ga. 316 in Barrow County.
Tuesday: A man was critically injured after being shot multiple times on U.S. 78 in DeKalb County.
About the Author