'There's a gang war going on': Residents reeling after South Seattle shootings
by KOMO Staff
SEATTLE - Police in South Seattle are looking into two fatal shooting just days apart and in virtually same spot.
Someone shot a man Friday night at a memorial service for his friend. His friend, a 32-year-old man, was shot several times and died Sunday at Harborview Medical Center.
Both shootings happened off 37th Avenue and South Oregon Street in Seattle's Columbia City neighborhood. The man shot Friday night was part of a group of people who had gathered to pay tribute to the 32-year-old man.
Witnesses tell police that someone in a dark sedan drove by the scene and started shooting.
A man who has requested not to be identified says he was seated on some steps near the scene when the shooting occurred. He said he heard six or seven shots right through the air.
"All of a sudden it was, 'boom, boom, boom, boom," he said. "People were just running, it was chaos."
The man said he ran over to try and help the shooting victim but was unable to help.
"[The shooting] was senseless," he said. "This individual died in my arms. I'm still trying to work through that."
Police say homicide and gang detectives are working to interview witnesses about Friday's shooting. Bike officers patrolled the area throughout the day Saturday.
Nearby residents say the shootings are heartbreaking and that they hit too close to home.
Pat Murakami, President of the South Seattle Crime Prevention Council, says the shootings in and around South Seattle these past few months are an ongoing problem.
"I'm very concerned," Murakami said. "...There's a gang war going on. I do believe things are escalating and it is very frightening."
A memorial for Sunday's victim has been slowly growing just off 37th Avenue and South Oregon Street.
Police have not said if Friday night's shooting was a retaliation shooting. They have also not said if victim was the intended target.
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