Crime

‘The violence has to stop’: 6 killed, 3 injured in shootings since Friday in KC metro

Six people were killed and three were injured in shootings between Friday and Sunday on Memorial Day weekend across the Kansas City area, police said.

One man was killed after struggling with a Kansas City police officer. Three were injured at a gaming event for college students.

Shootings throughout the weekend left Kansas City with 54 homicides so far in 2019. By this time in 2018, police had recorded 48 killings in a year that ended with 136, down from 151 in 2017 but up from other recent years.

Nine homicides have been reported this year in Kansas City, Kansas. That’s down from 16 by this time in 2018, which ended with 33, according to data kept by The Star.

Friday

The first killing came just before 3 a.m. Friday when a woman was shot in Kansas City, Kansas. She was one of three people fatally shot in the city by the end of the weekend.

Officers responded to that shooting at an apartment complex in the 600 block of South 71st Terrace near 72nd Street and Kansas Avenue. Identified Monday as Regina Hill, she was pronounced dead at the scene.

Someone placed pink and yellow flowers on the grass near where she died.

An arrest was made in the killing, Police Chief Terry Zeigler said on Twitter, but no additional information has been released.

Saturday

A disturbance led to gunfire early Saturday in Kansas City, witnesses told police. Officers responded to the shooting about 12:30 a.m. at a home in the 4100 block of Montgall Avenue, where a man was pronounced dead. His name has not been released.

Those involved in the shooting were in contact with detectives, who were not searching for suspects, Kansas City police Sgt. Jacob Becchina said.

Later that night in Kansas City, Kansas, Troy Drew called 911 when he heard four gunshots in his neighborhood. Responding officers found a man, identified Monday as Aaron Johnson, who had been fatally shot shortly after 10:40 p.m. in the 1600 block of Holt Lane.

Drew always calls police when he hears gunshots in his neighborhood. He has been “a little apprehensive” about shootings since he found a slug in his roof three years ago, he said.

An arrest was made in that homicide, Zeigler said.

About an hour later, gunfire erupted during an under-21 event for college students at a gaming center in midtown Kansas City. Officers responded before 11:50 p.m. when they heard gunshots and found people spilling out from Local Legends Gaming at 3933 Main Street.

Three people suffered gunshot wounds, and one was listed in critical condition. One person was trampled by a crowd.

Once he got home about 4 a.m., the center’s owner, AbdulRasheed Yahaya, 31, posted on Facebook to let friends know he was not hurt. But, he wrote, he was also “not OK.”

“The violence has to stop,” Yahaya said.

Photographs from inside the center showed where bullets hit walls. Yahaya was disheartened, saying he opened the event space to give Kansas City youth an alternative to bars.

“It kind of sucks to see such a negative thing come out of a positive space,” Yahaya said.

Police have not announced any arrests or released any suspect information in that shooting.

Sunday

A suspect in an armed carjacking was shot and killed early Sunday morning by a Kansas City police officer as they struggled during an arrest, according to police.

Multiple callers told police an armed man forced his way into a home about 12:30 a.m. Sunday in the 7000 block of Bellefontaine Avenue. Officers learned one caller’s husband fought off the man, but he used force to take a vehicle and fled, police said.

Minutes after two officers went to look for the car, the man, identified as 30-year-old Terrance Bridges, returned to the home, according to police. When an officer tried to take him into custody, Bridges ran away, police said.

Bridges allegedly resisted arrest when the officer caught up with him just south of the home. The Metro Patrol Division officer, who was not identified, shot Bridges during the struggle. Bridges died at a hospital, according to police. The officer was uninjured.

Bridges’ mother, Rotonya McGee, told KCTV she has questions for police officials. McGee could not immediately be reached by The Star for comment.

“For them to just take his life like that, I need answers,” McGee told the television station. “I need proof.”

The shooting remained under investigation.

Then, shortly before 2 p.m., a man was pronounced dead after he was shot several times at Parkwood Boulevard and Brown Avenue in Kansas City, Kansas, the third homicide in as many days in the city, according to police.

Family members of the man, who has not been identified publicly, gathered at the scene as detectives spoke with neighbors, Officer Jonathon Westbrook said. No suspect information has been released.

In the early evening, a 38-year-old man was found shot in front of a home at 5:15 p.m. in the 1000 block of Pinkston Street in Grandview. The man, Chad McLanahan, died at a local hospital, police said.

No arrests have been announced in that shooting.

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Luke Nozicka covers local crime and federal courts for The Kansas City Star. Before joining The Star, he covered breaking news and courts for The Des Moines Register.
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