YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — Tuesday morning’s shooting at a South Avenue bar that killed a man and wounded another is the city’s fourth shooting at a bar or nightclub this year.
Police have released little information on the shooting about 2:15 a.m. Tuesday in front of Savo Bar and Grille, 2800 South Ave., other than to say gunfire erupted in the parking lot. The bar’s owner disputes that it happened in the parking lot and that the shots were fired from the street.
An incident report was not made available. A detective supervisor did not return two calls seeking more information and police put out a press release with very little information. At the scene, police said the gunfire had nothing to do with anything that went on inside the bar.
On May 23, two people were killed and three others wounded outside the Torch Nightclub on Salt Springs Road. Police have not released much information on that case either, saying they are awaiting the results of tests on evidence collected at the scene.
On April 3, one person was killed and two others wounded at a shooting at Club Utopia on East Midlothian Boulevard. Police said the man who was killed, Charles Allen, 27, was targeted and giving a rap performance when he was killed.
On March 4, a man was killed and a security guard and a suspect wounded at the former Coconut Grove, 3200 South Ave. Police said the suspect, Erik Jenkins, 25, began shooting at the bar and a security guard inside returned fire, striking Jenkins. Thomas Williams, 34, was killed outside. Police said he may have been hit with a round fired by the security guard. They are awaiting ballistics tests to determine if that was the case.
Jenkins was arrested on an aggravated murder charge and is in the Mahoning County jail awaiting trial.
Last February, a man was also killed in the Savo Bar and Grille parking lot after a fight inside the bar spilled outside. Police said Ramon Cooper, 29, went to his car to get a gun and fired at Aaron Clinkscale, 28. Clinkscale got a gun out of his car and returned fire, killing Cooper.
Clinkscale was arrested on a murder charge, but the grand jury refused to indict him for murder. He was instead indicted for being a felon in possession of a firearm, a charge he pleaded guilty to. He was sentenced to three years in prison even though he claimed the shooting was self defense.
On Nov. 19, just feet from where Williams was killed, Marquis Bebbs, 35, died after he was shot outside the Coconut Grove. Police said the shooting was the spillover from a fight that broke out inside the bar.
A warrant for aggravated murder was issued for Abdul Muhammad, 29, shortly after the shooting, but police have been unable to find him.
Youngstown now has 15 homicides. At this point last year, the city also had 15 homicides. There have been 55 people shot so far this year, 32 of them on the south side. Last year at this time, there were 38 people shot.
Overall in 2020, 98 people were shot, including 27 of 28 homicide victims, up from 58 people shot in 2019, including all of that year’s 20 homicide victims.