Teen killed near Lamar HS was trying to get away from gang violence

A cellphone camera captured the sounds of the shots that cut down Delindsey Mack. That's how most of us became aware of his brief existence on this planet. 

"I was devastated." Gerry Monroe knew him well, knew him for years, knew his parents and tried to intervene when the kid nicknamed "Poppy" fell in with the wrong crowd.

"I tried counseling. I tried mentoring," Monroe says. "The thing is he was not the kind of kid that didn't want it. He actively wanted it. But when the streets are pulling you."

That pull can be powerful. Police wouldn't speculate if the pull of the streets had turned deadly for Poppy.

"We can sit and judge people and say 'this happened because that happened.' I don't care why it happened. I want to put an end to it," said Executive Assistant Chief Troy Finner with the Houston Police Department. 

But sources tell FOX he ran with a group called The Free Money Gang that operates out of the Sir John Apartments and surrounding area. Others tell us that was just a group of friends. His real gang affiliation was with the Yellowstone Boys who are locked in a struggle with another Third Ward gang, the 103's.

"They're at war. It's not a secret. They're at war. The City of Houston knows it. The mayor knows it. They are at war," Monroe says.

He says it's playing out across the city, including two shootings on October 6. The shooting at the Pappasito's on the South Loop was quickly followed by a fatal shooting at a gas station on Cullen. He says this time it's different.

"So now the violence has made it to River Oaks. I think something's going to get done now."

He might be right. Thursday morning a group of about 50 parents plan to gather outside Lamar High School to demand a safer school.