1 dead, 1 injured in shooting near Georgia State campus

No students were involved in incident, authorities say
An argument led to gunfire early Friday morning near the Georgia State University campus.

Credit: John Spink/AJC

Credit: John Spink/AJC

An argument led to gunfire early Friday morning near the Georgia State University campus.

One person was killed and another was injured after an argument led to gunfire early Friday morning, the latest incident near Georgia State University’s campus in downtown Atlanta.

Police were called to an area in front of a building on Piedmont Avenue between John Wesley Dobbs and Auburn avenues around 1 a.m. When they got there, they found two men with gunshot wounds. Neither of them were students, police told Channel 2 Action News.

An Atlanta police officer gathers crime scene tape after the double shooting Friday.

Credit: John Spink

icon to expand image

Credit: John Spink

The victims were rushed to Grady Memorial Hospital, the news station reported, where one of them died. He was identified as 20-year-old Ryan Kernizan by the Fulton County Medical Examiner’s Office. The second victim was described as stable.

In a campus-wide email, GSU police said a group of men were fighting when things escalated. One man was “immediately apprehended” and placed under arrest, according to the email. The suspect has not been publicly identified.

Campus police have not shared further details or responded to requests for more information.

Credit: WSBTV Videos

Deadly double shooting investigation on Georgia State University campus underway, Atlanta police say

Several shootings have taken place on or near the downtown campus in the past year, with varying levels of impact on the university.

A Georgia State student, who did not want to be identified Friday afternoon, said safety could be better in the area, but that he thought the problem was guns, not crime. Another student, freshman Nana Alexander, said she was exasperated by the multiple recent incidents near campus.

”There’s police cars, but they’re always empty,” Alexander said about the police presence on campus. “It’s crazy that (the shooting) took place, but at the same time, they put out their little patrol cars but they’re not patrolling.”

Zayvion Sheppard, the first-ever freshman to be elected GSU student body president, said he was disappointed by the incident, but not surprised.

“I work with the administration, and when I talk to them, we’re all on the same page about what needs to be done to make students feel safe,” Sheppard said.

Now a sophomore, Sheppard said students feel they’re not getting the attention they need from city officials. He said the city government could help by implementing more pedestrian safety measures, such as diagonal crosswalks, and helping with campus beautification.

“The university can only do so much,” he said. “We need more help from the city because throwing more police officers at the issue isn’t working.”

The most recent incident near campus happened on the afternoon of Oct. 31, when a man was shot to death at the Georgia State MARTA station on Piedmont Avenue. Two days before that, four people were shot at the intersection of Dobbs Avenue and Courtland Street, including two students who were injured and a 19-year-old woman who died.

That shooting prompted the university’s leaders to discuss plans to add more security measures.

In March, a shooting outside a student housing building near campus prompted a police investigation. Witnesses saw people in two vehicles shooting into the air as they left the area. No injuries were reported.

In December 2022, 24-year-old GSU student Joshua Igbinijesu was fatally shot at a gas station near campus. The following day, police announced they had determined it was a ”targeted incident.”

— Please return to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution for updates.