'Pray for him': Store owner holds vigil for Macon teen shot in face

    Raman Kumar held a vigil on January 11 to remember a 15-year-old shooting victim left in critical condition after an incident outside of his store, the Houston Ave. Market, the night before/WGXA

    MACON, Ga. -- The owner of a convenience store in south Macon where a 15-year-old was shot in the face late Thursday night wanted to make sure "Tator," as he's affectionately known, isn't forgotten.

    Authorities said the teen remains in the hospital, and people from his neighborhood showed up to the Houston Food Market at the corner of Houston Ave. and Rocky Creek Rd. to pray for him Friday evening.

    Raman Kumar said the 15-year-old is a "good kid" who comes by his corner store often.

    "Since I opened this store I know him. He comes many times a day to the store, he never had a problem with anybody. He didn't give us a hard time. He's a very sweet kid, so we want to pray for him so he gets well soon," said Kumar.

    Others who showed up to the vigil begged the community to stop the violence and instead focus on things like sports for the county's youth.

    "Let's do something, they don't have anything to do around here," said one of Kumar's employees. "We appreciate you coming today, pray for him."

    Bibb County deputies said the shooting happened outside of the convenience store around 10:45 p.m. Thursday. Three men were allegedly standing outside when one of them took out a handgun and shot the teen in the face.

    The shooting's motive isn't yet clear, but the incident left the 15-year-old in critical condition. Deputies said the two others at the scene, including the shooter, fled.

    Kumar said he hopes to see "Tator" hanging around his store again sometime soon. "It's sad, but we're praying for him," Kumar said. "His family, be strong. God is right here, He will take care of him."

    Anyone with information about this case is asked to call the Bibb County Sheriff’s Office at 478-751-7500, or report a tip anonymously to Macon Regional Crime Stoppers at 1-877-68CRIME.

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