GOODWATER, Ala. (WIAT) — The Goodwater police department and city council have announced a curfew effective Wednesday for both adults and children in the small Coosa County town.
The announcement, which comes just days after the shooting death of a 23-year-old in Goodwater, said that the curfew for adults will last through Sunday. The curfew for minors, officials said, “will stay in effect until further notice.”
Police chief Corey Shaw told CBS 42 the curfew won’t impact vehicles on the road or individuals at their own homes. Instead, he said, the measure is meant to prevent loitering, particularly by kids and teens, in the town.
The curfew takes effect less than a week after Malik Holtzclaw, a 23-year-old, was killed by gunfire in a crowd on Cinco de Mayo.
On that day, Goodwater police responded to calls of shots fired on Highland Street, according to a statement by the county sheriff’s office. When officers arrived, they reportedly found Holtzclaw suffering from an apparent gunshot wound. Police said the man was transferred to Russell Medical Center where he was pronounced dead.
A day later, the Coosa County Sheriff’s Office, which had been asked to assist in the case, announced the arrests of two Sylacauga men in Holtzclaw’s death. Kendartus Hale and Erskin McKinney Jr. were charged with manslaughter in the case, the statement said.
“If you could’ve been there, it was a horrific scene,” Shaw said. “What happened was a senseless act of gun violence.”
In court documents, police claim that Hale and McKinney admitted to firing rounds while at a party at Highlands Apartments in Goodwater.
Their “recklessness in shooting caused the death of another person,” police claim.
Shaw said he asked the city council to implement the curfew, and they agreed.
Lifelong resident Vickie Tuck said Goodwater was not always like this.
“You can’t blame everybody. You got some good people out there, sometimes they just need good role models,” Tuck said. “I pray to God that we make a change starting now. Yes, it’s long overdue, but we can make a change and we need to do it together.”
Resident Mike Thomas said the curfew is necessary.
“It’s going to help get a lot of the young people off the street,” Thomas said. “They just really hanging out and if you’re hanging out and ain’t got nothing to do, people are going to get into trouble.”
A visitation for Malik Holtclaw is scheduled for 4:00 p.m. on May 12 at Armour’s Memorial Chapel in Alexander City. A funeral service is set for May 13 at 1:00 p.m. at Old Goodwater High School auditorium.
There will be a community meeting on May 12 at 6:00 p.m. at Goodwater Auditorium located at 166 Harris Street for residents to discuss the curfew and other options.