But as if that crime chaos wasn’t enough, it now looks like the city is smack in the middle of a mid-week shooting spree. As the Plain Dealer reports this morning, in the last 12 hours alone seven people have been shot in incidents around the city. Tack that number onto the total from this weekend’s havoc, and 12 individuals have been gunned down since last Friday — quite an eye-opener. We can’t cover them all, but here’s a quick-hit run through of the major incidents that have rocked the 216 in the last 6 days. We’ll call it Notes from The Decline of Western Civilization, Bullet-Riddled Rust Belt Edition:
Things kicked off with an unfortunate bang early Saturday morning when local arts fixture Jeffry Chiplis was shot in Tremont. According to reports, the artist was on foot after the popular Tremont ArtWalk when he was accosted by two would-be muggers near West 3rd and Literary Avenue. The men demand Chiplis’ money, but the artist booked in the other direction. While fleeing he was shot in the back. As of Monday he was reported to be in fair condition.
Sunday evening capped the weekend with what looks like an old fashion biker fight at an East Side watering hole. Unfortunately, the incident ended with one body lying in the street and an unruly almost-mob of motorcyclists.
According to initial news reports and information passed along from the Cleveland PD, around midnight Sunday an altercation broke out between two guys near East 93rd Street and Benham Avenue, outside a nearby nightclub, Fresh. Police say the argument was over a woman.
What began as a verbal back and forth reportedly ended in gunshots. When the smoke cleared, a 35-year old man was hit twice in the chest. By the time EMS arrived on the scene, he was dead. Three other men were rushed to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries. The assailant is still at large.
After the shooting, motorcycle gangs circled up in the intersection, according to the PD. The SWAT team was called in to disperse the tense crowd.
That brings us to the latest series of shootings. As the PD reports, last night two guys in a white Saturn rolled up on a group of people milling about the 700 block of East 154th Street. They fired into the crowd. Two 20-year olds were hit.
A couple of hours later police were called in on another round of saloon shootin’, this time outside Johnny & Co. Bar at 18029 Euclid Ave. The incident reportedly started predictably enough with a bar fight. Following the scuffle, one party was ejected by security; an hour later, he allegedly returned and fired into a crowd outside the bar, hitting four people before fleeing in a blue Chevy Camaro. Police searching the area eventually pulled over a car matching the description near I-90. A search produced a semiautomatic pistol and led to the arrest of three male suspects, Marvin Taten, 21; Robert Tate, 22; and Melvin Clark, 24. The cops are looking for a fourth suspect who left the scene on motorcycle.
Last but not least: Around 4 a.m. this morning another man was shot at East 44th Street and Sackett Ave. The victim was able to drive himself to the hospital.
Here’s to a quick recovery for all the victims and a week of bullet-less merriment around town. — Kyle Swenson