UGA victim ID’d as lacrosse player; police release sketch of alleged shooter

Athens-Clarke County police have released a sketch of the person they say robbed a University of Georgia student at gunpoint just before shooting one of the school’s lacrosse players multiple times. 

The injured student, identified by his high school lacrosse team as Tate Prezzano, 22, was taken to a hospital with serious injuries Monday after the shooting, authorities said.

Police said the shooter was a man with dreads or twists driving an early 2000s model Ford Mustang. The convertible is white with a tan roof.

 

Officers were sent to the 2100 block of South Milledge Avenue on a shooting call just after 7:15 a.m. Monday, according to Athens-Clarke County police spokesman Geoffrey Gilland. While officers were en route, the police department received a second call about an armed robbery that happened just moments before near the same location. 

When police arrived, they found a man who had been shot multiple times while waiting at an Athens bus stop. Prezzano was given first aid and taken to a local hospital with life-threatening injuries, Gilland said.

Cambridge High School’s lacrosse team identified Prezzano, who is a junior communications major at UGA, as the victim. In a tweet, the school in Milton said he is in “critical but stable condition.” 

Athens police have not confirmed the victim’s identity. 

A UGA student who lives just yards from the shooting scene told Channel 2 Action News he heard two gunshots.

“I was just laying in bed and I heard, ‘Pow! Pow!’” Zac Hendrix said. “And I was like, ‘Woah!’ So then I woke up, I immediately ran outside and I looked on the ground and there was a picture I never want to see again with blood just gushing out of someone. It was real sad.”

 

Prior to the shooting, a second victim, who is also a UGA student, was robbed at gunpoint, police chief Cleveland Spruill said in a news conference Monday afternoon. That student was not hurt in the robbery and was able to give police a description of the robber. 

School police and the GBI are assisting in the investigation, according to the alert from UGA. 

"We are deeply saddened by these tragic and shocking events," said an email sent to notify students, faculty and staff of the incident. “Our thoughts and prayers go out to our two students who were involved — one of whom is hospitalized — as well as their families and friends.”

 

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact Lt. Stephen Daniel at Stephen.Daniel@accgov.com or 706-613-3330, ext. 235, or Sgt. David Norris at David.Norris@accgov.com or 706-613-3330, ext. 556. 

—Please return to AJC.com for updates. 

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