COLUMBIA COUNTY, Ga. (WJBF) – Columbia County is mourning the loss of a 17-year old boy who was shot and killed over the weekend after being mistaken for an intruder.
Monday, papers filled with heartfelt messages from Jordan Middleton’s friends lined the media center at Grovetown High.
Jordan, or “Jo Jo,” as friends call him, was shot and killed while visiting a 14- year old girl at a home in Grovetown, early Saturday morning.
Investigators say her father mistook him for an intruder.
Former classmates and friends at Jordan’s previous school also paid tribute, Monday.
Evans High students dressed in black and wrote what they wish they could say to their friend who’s no longer here.
Counselors and teachers were on hand throughout the day.
“Some of the things we try to do is, students who need the support, we set up groups in the media center where kids can come in and talk if they want to,” said Assistant Superintendent Deborah Williams.
Although Jordan’s loss is an isolated incident, Juvenile Court Judge Doug Flanagan says he’s seen similar cases in this courtroom.
“It’s not new, you can’t change biology. Young men, if they’re invited to go somewhere, whether it’s for a piece of pizza, a Coca-Cola, something else to meet a young lady, they’re going to show up and a lot of times they show up in people’s houses and the parents don’t know about it,” said Flanagan.
Flanagan says his thoughts and prayers go out to both families involved and there is a lesson to be learned.
“All teenagers think they’re going to live forever, but like I say this is a good opportunity for all the parents to let their children know, ‘Hey, this is what can happen when you don’t listen to your parents,'” said Flanagan.
While Flanagan will be using this tragic story to educate others, the school system is hoping parents will also talk with their children outside of school.
“Parents just need to be there to talk with their children if they need to. If they see some different types of behavior… because death is very challenging for students,” said Williams.
NewsChannel 6 spoke with Jordan’s mother.
She says the family has set up Jordan Middleton’s Memorial Fund at Wells Fargo bank to help pay for burial expenses.
You can donate at any branch.
The funeral will be Saturday, March 4 at 1 p.m. at Friendly Church of God in Christ located at 1115 Carrie Street in Augusta.
Visitation will be from 11 a.m.-1 p.m., Saturday.
The burial will be at Mt. Olive Memorial Gardens at 3666 Deans Bridge Road in Hephzibah.