NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — A community activist who used to live in the Vernon Drive area of Norfolk where a 15-year-old boy was shot and killed Thursday afternoon recalled a time when the neighborhood wasn’t so dangerous.

Police said the call came in around 3:30 p.m. for a shooting in the 1700 block of Vernon Drive, not far from Campostella Road and Berkley Avenue. A teen was taken to the hospital with life-threatening injuries, but he later died.

Bilal Muhammad, who lost his son to gun violence in another part of Norfolk earlier this year, said people could sleep outside at night during the summer and feel safe.

“You didn’t have to look over your shoulder worrying about someone who was going to pull out a gun or a knife,” Muhammad said.

A woman who lives in the neighborhood, Joan Spaulding, said the violence there has her shaken.

“I don’t know what’s happening to our children,” she said.

She said her heart goes out to the family of the victim.

“If it was my child or one of my children, I wouldn’t be in my right mind,” Spaulding said.

Anyone with information on the incident can call the Crime Line at 1-888-LOCK-U-UP.