Fayetteville Teen Shot In The Neck Recovering, Family Speaks Out After Tragic Incident

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (KFSM) — 17-year-old Austin King of Fayetteville is still recovering after being rushed to the hospital with a gunshot wound to the neck on Friday, September 6. His family spoke with 5NEWS about how they've been dealing with the tragic shooting as police continue to search for the gunman.

King was placed in intensive care. He has undergone two surgeries since the shooting.

"Austin's doing great, all things considered," said Austin's brother Jason Smithwick.

Doctor's set the bar low for Austin's recovery, but his family says they won't accept that.

"From that point, it's been nothing but good news almost every day," Smithwick said.

The injury caused spinal damage and Austin faces paralysis.

"We have some movement in his right arm, and he's getting feeling back slowly through other parts of his body. So, we're seeing improvement what we would consider quickly," Austin's dad Kevin King told 5NEWS.

Austin's father and brother created two different GoFundMe accounts to help pay for Austin's medical and rehabilitation cost.

Police haven't released many details into what led to the shooting.  Austin's family says they've tried to ask him what happened using technology.

"I was able to get information out of him, but because of how he is mentally in there, with everything and the medicines, it's not so concrete," Smithwick said.

Until police uncover more about the crime and Austin can communicate, his family says they're concentrating on bringing him home.

"No matter what the outcome is, it's God's plan. We don't understand it, but that's what it is," Smithwick said.

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