4 people killed, 28 hurt in shooting at Alabama birthday party

One of the four people killed in the mass shooting in Dadeville, Alabama, was a star high school football player and track team member, his coach told ABC News.

Philstavious “Phil” Dowdell, a senior at Dadeville High School, had committed to attending Jacksonville State University on a football scholarship, said coach Roger McDowell.

McDowell said Dowdell was at a sweet 16 birthday party at a venue in Dadeville Saturday night when a shooting erupted.

In addition to those killed, at least 28 people were injured. McDowell said Dowdell’s mother, who was a chaperone at the party, was among those hurt, shot twice in the legs.

Rich Rodriguez, Jacksonville State’s head football coach, said in a post on Twitter Sunday, that the death of Dowdell and the other victims is a “senseless tragedy.”

“He was a great young man with a bright future,” Rodriguez tweeted. “My staff and I are heartbroken and hope that everyone will support his family through this difficult time.”

McDowell said he also knew a teenage girl who was killed in the shooting. He said she was a senior and the manager of the track and football teams.

In addition to being a standout wide receiver, Dowdell was also a member of the high school track team, McDowell said.

“Phil was humble with a major smile,” McDowell told ABC News. “He had one goal to get to the NFL and take care of his mom.”

-ABC News’ Elwyn Lopez

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