published Tuesday, March 22nd, 2011

Chattanooga: Westside shootings leave 3 injured

Police on scene at Cypress Street Court.
Police on scene at Cypress Street Court.

As children ran and played games on a playground in the heart of the College Hill Courts development Monday evening, Chattanooga police armed with AR-15 rifles searched a building only yards away for suspects involved in a triple shooting that occurred half an hour earlier.

Gunfire broke out in an intersection in the 1200 block of Cypress Street Court around 7 p.m., according to police spokeswoman Sgt. Jerri Weary.

Officers located two victims near the scene, one shot in the upper left shoulder and the other struck in the upper part of his back.

A third victim showed up to Erlanger hospital with a gunshot wound to the lower left leg. None of the injuries appear to be life-threatening, Weary said.

Despite the large number of people outside at the time of the shooting, police said no one else came forth injured as of Monday night.

Three vehicles were also struck in the barrage of gunfire, according to Weary.

Police did not recover any weapons, but they found the spent shell casings from three guns: an assault rifle, a .45-caliber pistol and a shotgun.

On Monday evening, police were still combing the development and were unable to give any motive or suspect information. They were not able to comment whether any of the victims were shooters or if gang activity was involved.

Three girls sat on a nearby stoop as the sun went down, watching the officers and talking quietly among themselves.

“I’m used to it by now,” said Yasmine Smith, 13, said of the shootings.

Smith, who lives in the development, recalled the March 7 shooting on Cypress Street Court where Darrell Paris, 22, was shot in the stomach with a 16-gauge sawed-off shotgun.

No suspect has been caught in that case.

“I just wish they’d stop all this violence, all this fighting,” said Jermiyha Walker, 16. “Or I wish I could just go out of town somewhere, just get away.”

Contact staff writer Kate Harrison at kharrison@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6673.

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