Police in Mobile have been busy following a rash of shootings over a 16-hour period that resulted in one death and multiple injuries.
According to Chief Lawrence Battiste, between 8:30 p.m. on Tuesday and 11 a.m. Wednesday, there were four shootings that injured six people, one of whom died. As of yesterday, there was no evidence the incidents were correlated but police are actively investigating that possibility.
The first shooting was reported on Duval Street in Maysville shortly after 8:30 p.m., April 24. A 17-year-old and a 20-year-old were taken to the hospital for injuries but have since been released. Investigators are following up on leads, but no suspect has been identified.
A second shooting occurred Tuesday night on Driftwood Drive. Police say several rounds were fired into an occupied house, injuring two victims, one critically. Battiste said the second victim was an infant who sustained minor injuries from debris and broken glass.
On Wednesday, officers received reports of shots being fired on North Kendall Court in the early morning, but Battiste said that call resulted from an individual’s a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Around 11 a.m., a fourth shooting was reported at the intersection of Lafayette Street and Dr. Martin Luther King Drive, purportedly where two individuals were shot in a car. One of them, 21-year-old Carey Wheat, was pronounced dead at the scene. The other is being treated locally.
Though he didn’t tie any of the shootings to one another, Battiste noted vigilante justice wouldn’t be tolerated in Mobile. He also encouraged people who have information about violent crime in their communities to share it with police.
“Our community will not be held hostage or under siege by individuals who feel like the only way to get things done is by shooting it out in neighborhoods,” he said. “I’m asking the people who typically ask law enforcement what we’re doing, what are they doing in their communities to hold these individuals accountable. If they know who these individuals are, they need to speak up.”
Battiste also expressed frustration with individuals who won’t work police trying to solve violent crimes in their own neighborhoods and said in some cases that includes the victim themselves.
“There are oftentimes victims of crime that won’t speak up because they want to take matters into their own hands,” he said. “There are times our investigations are impeded because the victims fail to cooperate with us in sharing information about their assailant. There are families that are complicit that because they know who’s responsible.”
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