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Star QB injured in teen shooting days before leaving for college

Cameron Smith
Prep Rally

A terrifying shooting at a house party on Saturday night has left a former star high school quarterback's collegiate career in question and endangered the lives of 10 other teenage victims in Central Florida.

According to the Orlando Sentinel, Associated Press and other sources, 17-year-old Apopka, Florida teen Johnny Barnes allegedly entered a house party near Apopka and fired at a crowded room of fellow teenagers. By the time he had finished shooting his weapon, Barnes had hit 10 different teenage victims, varying in age from 15 to 20 years old.

Barnes has been charged with eight counts of attempted second-degree murder with a firearm and one count each of carrying a concealed firearm, shooting into an occupied dwelling and possession of a firearm by a minor. He is being held at the Orange Regional Juvenile Detention Center. Barnes has also reportedly been on probation since 2009 for an unspecified reason.

Among the shooting's victims was Keon Brooks, the star quarterback of Apopka (Fla.) High's 2010 football team. Brooks was scheduled to leave to start his collegiate career at Hutchinson (Kan.) Community College, where he planned to play for two seasons before transferring to a higher profile Division I program.
"The bullet went through both his legs," one of Brooks' childhood friends told WFTV.com. "He almost bled to death."

The Sentinel reported that the bullet which hit Brooks passed tore directly through his right thigh before lodging itself in his left thigh. The bullet was removed at Orlando Regional Medical Center, but the damage it caused could cost Brooks some of his first collegiate season. Regardless of his future availability, Brooks reportedly still plans to leave for Hutchinson on August 3.

"I saw Keon Sunday and he should be released from the hospital soon and make a full recovery," Apopka Football coach Rick Darlington told the Sentinel.

While Brooks may have a good chance of a full recovery, the future prognosis of the shooting's other victims remains far less certain. All 10 injured teens made it to area hospitals in time to receive medical attention and no fatalities have been sustained as a result of the injuries, as of yet.

As more information comes out about the incident, the images of the scene painted by relatives of victims and other area residents becomes more and more terrifying. The following anecdote is just one that has been relayed to the Sentinel and other Orlando-area sources.

Mike Dargan's 17-year-old daughter Morgan, a Wekiva High School senior, was seated on a couch at the party when the shots rang out, he said. She was hit in the calf.

"The other night I probably received the worst phone call a parent could get: 'Daddy, I'm shot,'" Dargan said Monday outside of Orlando Regional Medical Center where his daughter was recovering.

Morgan's older brother also attended the party, but left shortly before the shots were fired, Mike Dargan said. His son returned the house after hearing Morgan was injured and was holding his sister in his arms when she fainted.

"My son thought she had passed," Dargan said.

Despite the life-altering affect the shooting has had on his daughter's life, Dargan later said that he hoped Barnes would find a way to rehabilitate himself.

"Hopefully he will change," Dargan told the Sentinel. "He's torn up a lot of hearts; he's torn up a lot of lives."

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