Troy community saddened by shooting death of teen

TROY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Doreen Davis used three words to describe her son, Zaccai James: protective, loving, and thoughtful. James was shot and killed in Troy Saturday night.

Marie Davis, who lives at the house where it happened, says she got to know Zaccai well this summer. She’s been keeping an eye on him like she does with lots of kids in the neighborhood.

“He was just the sweetest kid,” Davis said. It was a devastating shock when she heard the gunfire that ended Zaccai’s life.

“It was just so horrible,” she said, “I was like, ‘oh my God, is it bullets again?’”

Troy Police say the preliminary investigation yielded that James, or potentially the group of individuals with which he was standing when the shooting occurred, was specifically targeted by the suspect(s).

“This is not how our kids are supposed to be living at all,” said Dawn Young, who lives in the area where the shooting happened. “It’s sad that we have to live in fear every day, and people have no remorse for our children or anybody’s lives,” Davis added.

Veronica Rountree has been doing advocacy work regarding gun violence in Troy for a few years. She’s known to many in the community as “Mama Love.”

“[Davis] has 30 kids on her porch because she can’t let them be in the streets. She wanted to keep them safe,” said Rountree. “It was working for a while. but now we’ve got people coming over here from Albany, Schenectady, even Troy, all shooting at each other.”

Troy Police had nothing new to share Wednesday morning about the investigation into the homicide.

“We will be hyper-focused on this investigation, where a young man from our community was killed as the result of criminal gun violence, and all necessary department resources will be dedicated to finding the individual(s) responsible for this heartless act,” police said in a statement Sunday.

If you have any information that could help detectives in this case, you are asked to call (518) 270-4426. Reports can also be filed anonymously online.

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