Seattle sees rash of gun violence; police chief responds

by: KIRO 7 News Staff Updated:

Five people were shot in 24 hours in Seattle, leaving one person dead.

However, Seattle has only five homicides this year -- a number that's unusually low for a major city. 

Seattle police Chief Kathleen O’Toole released in a statement on Thursday saying the department is outraged by the recent gun violence and will not tolerate it. She reports police have been working with federal, state, and county partners – increasing patrols where shooting scenes unfolded. 

Here’s a timeline of when the incidents happened.

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1:41 a.m. May 5:  A 27-year-old man was shot on First Avenue near Blanchard in Belltown. The victim has life-threatening injuries.

3:01 a.m. May 4: Two innocent bystanders were struck by gunfire as they were driving in Seattle's Central District. Officers are investigating, but have not identified a suspect.

The shooting was in the 800 block of Martin Luther King Jr. Way South, at South Dearborn Street. Read full story here.

6:14 p.m. May 3: A teenage girl was killed in the passenger seat of a car in a Rainier Valley shooting that also left a man injured. Read full story here.

“Detectives believe the vehicle was targeted in the shooting,” police spokesman Jonah Spangenthal-Lee said in a statement. “An injured man was found in a nearby business, and does not appear to be associated with the vehicle. He was transported to Harborview Medical Center with non-life threatening injuries.

“At the same time of the shooting at Rainer Avenue and College Street, police received a report of gunfire at Rainier Avenue South and South Genesee Street. No victims were located at that scene, but police did locate shell casings in the area.”

The gang unit is investigating.

12:14 a.m. May 3: A 22-year-old woman was shot multiple times in North Seattle overnight in the 5200 block of 19 Avenue Northeast. Officers gave her aid until Seattle fire medics arrived, taking her to Harborview Medical Center. The University of Washington sorority member is expected to survive.

A robbery happened four blocks from where the shooting happened. Police have not officially linked the two. Read full story here.

Weather may be a factor.

Homicide detectives had noted that historically violence, specifically gang-related shootings, increase during sunny weather.

Thursday was the first Seattle day to top 70 degrees in 175 days.

There were no Seattle homicides from January 29 through April 11. From October 2016 through April, Seattle had 44.78 inches of rain. 

The Seattle homicide count above does not include the officer-involved shooting of Damarius Butts. The 19-year-old shot three officers before he was fatally wounded by police on April 20 in the Federal Office Building at 909 First Ave.

See a map of the incidents below 

 

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