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Man charged in Sunday Douglass Park shooting

A Columbia man was arrested Sunday and charged Monday for a Sunday morning shooting at Douglass Park.

28-year-old Anthony Prince is charged with armed criminal action, unlawful possession of a firearm, and shooting a firearm at or from a vehicle. His bond has been set at $100,000 cash only.

Police arrested Prince at the Midway Budget Hotel around 3 p.m. Sunday, according to Columbia Deputy Police Chief Jill Schlude. The department was able to find Prince through witnesses and video surveillance at the park.

A media release from Columbia police says Prince told the department he shot three times at Douglass Park after being robbed.

As of Sunday afternoon, no injuries from the incident had been reported.

Monday, court documents say Prince admitted to shooting three times, but the gun he was using was from the person trying to rob him.

Prince would not say what he did with the gun after the shooting.

Police did find ammunition and an empty gun in Prince’s room.

Douglass park has five video surveillance cameras. Columbia police have also put more officers in the park to help deter crime.

However, after Sunday’s shooting, those affected the most seem to be the children.

Sam Brady, the Douglass Park baseball coordinator, told ABC 17 News it was picture day Monday and not even half the kids showed up.

He told ABC 17 News that is because of the shooting.

He says he is tired and frustrated by this and wants change.

“We are a product of our environment. Our kids are a product of our environment. If our kids are seeing this behavior everyday and raised up in this behavior everyday they going to think it’s okay,” said Brady.

The first thing he would like to see, a ban on alcohol in the park.

“Right now you can come into this park with an open bottle of gin and sit down and have your drink. You can be belligerent, you can make a mockery of yourself and that seems to be okay,” said Brady.

First Ward Councilwoman Ginny Chadwick agreed saying “Allowing alcohol in a high risk, low income neighborhood park is a public health and safety issue that we should take a serious look at.”

Brady told ABC 17 News he would also like to see the shaded picnic area gone as well.

“That shelter is just a cover for bad things,” said Brady.

An amphitheater is something Brady hopes would go in its place.

While violence continues to plague the park, Brady is only fighting harder to make Douglass park a place everyone can feel safe.

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