A man in his 30s was killed during an early morning gunfight in the parking lot next to the ampm gas station at the intersection of 28th and J Streets in Midtown, according to the Sacramento Police Department.
Police spokesman Sgt. Andrew Pettit said that while it is still early in the investigation, the evidence police have collected so far indicates that the victim may have been an innocent bystander who was caught in the crossfire as two subjects fired at each other from opposite corners of 28th and J Streets.
“It appears right now that the person that was shot didn’t have a relationship with either of the shooters,” Pettit said at the scene early Saturday morning.
Pettit said the police were dispatched at 12:35 a.m. after receiving calls about gunshots in the area and a victim laying in the parking lot. Detectives believe the exchange may have started near the Blimpie parking lot on K Street, and that the shooting did not appear to be a driveby, according to Pettit.
Nelson Rangel Junior, 40, said he was walking from a nearby bar, on his way to meet the victim and his friends when the shooting happened. He said he heard gun shots, and, as he got to the scene, saw that the victim was bleeding from a head wound.
“There was blood everywhere, he’d been hit,” Junior said.
The parking lot and the gas station are popular hangouts for crowds leaving the cluster of bars and restaurants on J Street between 27th and 28th Streets. The area has drawn increased scrutiny from residents in recent months, as a spat of incidents has lead some to believe that the bars aren’t doing enough to keep the area safe.
Robert Velarde, 50, said he was walking in Marshall Park across the street when he heard the shots. He later watched as paramedics performed chess compressions on the victim before the man was taken away in an ambulance.
He said he thinks more should be done to make the area more secure late at night.
“If you live around here you want to be in safe a neighborhood, and Saturday night is not a safe night, that’s for sure,” Velarde said.
Seargent Andrew Pettit talks about the incident…
Statement from Police Spokesman Sgt. Andrew Pettit early Saturday morning:
“Early this morning around 12:35 a.m. in the intersection of J Street and 28th Street here in downtown Sacramento, officers responded to the sounds of shots fired. One witness advised that they actually saw a subject that was shot, laying in a parking lot just west of us here at ampm.
When officers got here that’s when they saw the male. He’s described as a male, white, in his 30s., wth an apparent gunshot wound to his upper body. Medical staff arrived on scene and transported him to an area hospital.
Based on interviews we obtained here on the scene and information we gathered and the evidence, it appears that there were two separate individuals shooting at each other and this victim was shot in the middle of the gunfire.
So at this point right now, we’re still looking at all the evidence that we have, CSI and homicide have been called out here and hopefully we’ll get some more information for you as leads develop.”
The press release:
The Sacramento Police Department is investigating an early morning shooting that left a male in his 30s deceased.
On August 18, 2012 at 12:35 a.m., police were called to 28th and J Street regarding the sounds of gunshots and a male who had been shot. Upon arrival, officers located the victim in a parking lot with a gunshot wound. Medical personnel arrived on scene and transported the victim to a nearby hospital where he was later pronounced deceased.
The Sacramento Police Department’s Homicide Unit and Crime Scene Investigations Unit responded to the scene. It was reported that shots were fired during an altercation between two groups near 28th and J Street. Based on the preliminary investigation, it appears the victim had no involvement in the dispute and was hit by one of the rounds fired across the parking lot. Detectives are continuing to actively investigate the circumstances that led to this homicide.
The Sacramento Police Department urges anyone with information pertaining to this crime to contact the dispatch center at (916) 264-5471 or Crime Alert at (916) 443-HELP (4357) or text in a tip to 274637 (CRIMES). Enter SACTIP followed by the tip information. Callers can remain anonymous and may be eligible for a reward of up to $1,000.
This post was produced in partnership with SacPress.com