Kent police Thursday were sorting through a messy crime scene after a dispute Wednesday night left a 19-year-old man shot dead and two 17-year-olds with serious injuries.
Kent Police Cmdr. Jarod Kasner said the two injured males were taken to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle in critical condition.
The shooting followed a dispute, Kasner said, after a group of people gathered Wednesday night in the 10800 block of Southeast 240th Street, near a McDonald’s restaurant, Chevron gas station and minimart.
Police were dispatched to the dispute about 9:55 p.m. When they arrived, they found two people had been shot and a third injured.
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“A dispute had erupted and resulted in gunshots fired, striking two males,” Kasner said. “In the chaotic moments that followed, the third male was struck by a leaving vehicle.”
The 19-year-old man, who had been shot in the torso, died at the scene after officers and medics tried to revive him, Kasner said.
Kasner said it’s unclear if the vehicle that struck the teenager contained anyone involved in the dispute, or if it was a passer-by trying to escape gunfire.
“We don’t think he was intentionally run over,” Kasner said
Police canvassed the neighborhood after the shooting but did not make any arrests, Kasner said. He did not believe a weapon had been recovered.
Surveillance video showing the scene was recovered from the Chevron station, which was about 150 feet from the shooting.
“We were knocking on doors and asking a lot of questions in the (apartment) complexes in that area,” he said. “It’s not a random targeting of the general population.”
Kasner said police did not have a suspect, and were trying to sort out accounts from witnesses.
“Indications of gang association have been mentioned and are being taken into account,” he said.
Kasner said there have been fights and disputes reported in the area.
“We get people who hang out and congregate,” he said. “We’ve done extra patrols.”
The manager of the Chevron convenience store and gas station, Mushtaq Noori, said he believes drug dealers have been spending time in the area.
“Every day something happens. Sometimes you can see someone talking together and selling something between each other,” he said. Teenagers are often trying to steal from the store, Noori said.
On Saturday, police records show a young man jumped over the store’s counter, pushed a clerk and stole cigarettes, according to Kasner.
Noori, who lives near the gas station and has six children, said he heard four or five gunshots Wednesday night.
“The kids were crying last night,” he said, telling him to “go and find another job” because they were so worried.