YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Youngstown police are investigating a shooting on the city’s South Side where three people were shot, including a 3-year-old. One man has died.
Police have identified the man who died as 24-year-old Rawsheem Aponte. The other two victims are girls, a 3-year-old and a 23-year-old.
Two unnamed suspects were listed in a press release sent out by police, both men.
Police were called just before 5:30 p.m. Tuesday to the 3800 block of Mohawk Avenue.
Neighbors reported hearing multiple gunshots from two different types of guns. Over 50 evidence markers were placed on the street.
“Looks like there was well over 50 gunshots — different calibers, multiple rifles — and it appeared they chased the victim. The shooting originated there and they chased him down the street to where it finished,” said Lt. Mohammad Awad with the Youngstown Police Department.
Awad said it appears one car was shooting at the other. He said the victims were chased by a suspect down a dead-end street, and the suspect began shooting at them toward the end of the street. The victims’ car then ended up on a nearby lawn, where the shooting ended.
All three victims were in the vehicle. According to police, the 23-year-old was shot in the leg, her 3-year-old’s leg was grazed by a bullet and Aponte was pronounced dead at the scene, likely from gunshot wounds. He was driving the vehicle.
“This doesn’t appear to be random. This appears to be a targeted hit on that individual,” Awad said.
Dozens of people were gathered around the scene, some were children who were visibly upset.
Albert Wolfe lives right next to the house that the car ended up at. He watched the two cars race down the street from his window.
“The next thing you know, there was firing — boom, boom, boom,” Wolfe said.
Kari Nantz was also home with her daughter when she heard the gunfire.
“It’s pretty scary. This is pretty close to home so I just feel bad for everybody else that’s involved,” Nantz said.
Awad said they have a good idea of what happened but can’t release all of the information yet. Awad said that this doesn’t appear to be random.
“A lot of us have small children. It’s definitely heartbreaking. We have multiple detectives out working this case,” Awad said.
The shootings on Mohawk give the city 24 shootings for the year — the same number at this time last year when 139 people were shot, 31 fatally.
“It’s definitely a tough day in Youngstown and we’re going to do our best to solve this,” Awad said.
Awad added that they can’t release any information on suspects right now.
At last check, the two other victims were in stable condition.
Seventh Ward Councilwoman Basia Adamczak had this to say about the shooting:
The violent crime and seemingly reckless regard for human life is totally unacceptable! The residents of the city, including myself, are full of anguish, anger, fear, sadness…
As the problem doesn’t seem to curtail with the current efforts in place- a different approach needs to be taken.
I am pleading for the people of our city! May the Mayor and his administration call upon the help and partnership of other municipalities, and other local and federal law enforcement. We need their aide, we need new strategies, we need their ideas and support, and we need it now! We cannot continue in this way!
Youngstown Mayor Tito Brown has scheduled a press conference for 12:30 p.m. Wednesday to address the shooting.