With her 18-year-old son fighting for his life in a Jackson hospital, Kizmet Hamilton is praying for justice. Zacharias Blanchard was critically injured Sunday following a shooting at Club Rock in Starkville.
“When I finally got to see him he was in really bad shape,” Hamilton said. “He was actually in a coma when we first arrived at the hospital and all I just wanted to do was hold his hand and let him know we’re there and that he’s going to make it through this.”
“It just brought me to tears and I said I wanted me and him to swap places,” Zacharias’s father David Blanchard said. “You could just let me be there and go ahead. Because that’s a hard pill to swallow to see that.”
Zacharias’s family and the Oktibbeha County Sheriff’s Department are asking for the public’s help.
“Estimates from the witnesses we talked to place the crowd at this club at the time in excess of 1,000 people,” Lt. Brett Watson said. “We know that there are people in the community who saw this shooting happen.”
Authorities say more than 20 gunshots rang out during the incident. They’ve interviewed over 30 witnesses, but still, they haven’t made an arrest.
“I’ve been doing this for 20 plus years. This is the first time that I can recall when we’ve had an incident of this magnitude and no one has been willing to come forward and stand up and help us do the right thing,” Lt. Watson said.
Zacharias’s parents are asking and pleading with those who know anything, to speak up for their son.
“What if this were your sister, your brother, your mother, your father,” Hamilton said. “I have one question for you: Would you want justice for them? Would you want someone to speak out for them? I would just like someone, anyone to come forward.”
The four other victims in the shooting have been released from the hospital.
If you know anything about the shooting, please call the Oktibbeha County Sheriff’s Department at 662-323-2421. You can also leave an anonymous tip on the sheriff’s department’s website at www.sheriff.oktibbeha.ms.us.