Seven people – including a 15-year-old boy who was killed – were shot in West Baltimore on Saturday night, and police believe it stemmed from a conflict over an illegal dice game.
The 15-year-old victim was not identified late Saturday, and police said they did not yet know whether he was the intended target. Police Commissioner Anthony Batts said this year authorities have seen a rise in "cluster" shootings in which multiple victims are struck by gunfire, and they are investigating whether there is a cause for the rise in cluster shootings.
Overall, shootings in Baltimore are up this year over last by double-digit figures, though Batts said the number of shooting incidents is about the same as it was last year. He called Saturday's shooting "outrageous."
The shooting happened around 9:15 p.m. in the 1500 block of W. Fayette St., police said. The other six victims, all adults, and were expected to survive their injures, with a couple of them running to flag down police a couple of blocks away and others taking themselves to a hospital.
"We have to modify our behavior," said Batts, referring to the citizenry and explaining that police cannot be stationed on every block. "This is not how you deal with conflict."
Batts said police were still unsure how the conflict over the dice game began but that typically in such incidents, someone tries to rob another player.
Along one side of the trash-strewn street, police placed more than a dozen evidence markers over potential shell casings, with that evidence spread out over a half-block.
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