Seattle Police Department detectives are investigating three homicides that occurred this month in the Central District and Leschi neighborhoods, including two that happened late last week and bear the earmarks of being gang related.
An SPD detective told KING 5 that police suspect tensions within two Central District gangs are behind the rash of violence.
Officially, however, SPD is not confirming the gang suspicion. SPD spokesperson Patrick Michaud said the gang unit responded to all three shooting scenes, but there is “nothing solid” pointing to a gang connection. “It’s still being investigated,” Michaud said.
The area has a long history of gang violence. The most recent homicide occurred Friday night at 28th Avenue South and South Charles Street. Officers responded to reports of shots fired and found a man lying dead in the street. Despite nearly three dozen people being in the area at the time, no one provided police with a description, according to the SPD source.
One day earlier, a 20-year-old man was shot and killed on 28th Avenue South roughly two blocks from the scene of Friday’s homicide. Callers reported seeing a car speeding away and a man running from the scene. On April 19, a 24-year-old man was fatally shot on a sidewalk near East Union Street and 22nd Avenue. That victim’s funeral is scheduled for Monday, and Michaud confirmed that SPD intends to have extra patrols working the area.
According to the SPD blotter, officers also responded to a report of shots fired early Sunday at the intersection of 12th Avenue South and South Main Street where they located about a dozen spent shell casings. Officers stopped a car with five men inside that seen speeding from the scene. Police said they found a bullet on the front passenger seat and an apparent bullet hole in the rear bumper. The men, all in their twenties, were identified and released pending further investigation.