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News Maryland Baltimore Crime Beat

Triple shooting rattles East Baltimore neighborhood

Baltimore Police have not released any motive for a shooting on East Eager Street in Johnston Square on Saturday night that left three people wounded, including a child.

Police say they're working to find who was responsible for the shooting.

"The Baltimore Police Department echoes our communities' outrage over the fact that, again, an innocent child has been caught up in a reprehensible act of violence," the police said in a statement issued Sunday afternoon. "This was not a random act — and those responsible will be held accountable."

Three people were wounded in the shooting, which happened at 9:39 p.m. in the 1200 block of E. Eager St., including a boy, who is 6 or 7 years old.

One person had multiple gunshot wounds, another was shot in the lower torso and the third person was shot in the back right thigh. As of Sunday night, the victims were all listed in good condition at a hospital, police said. None of the victims were identified by police.

Detective Angela Carter-Watson, a police spokeswoman, said Sunday night that police believed the shooting stemmed from a prior dispute and that the child was not the intended target. She asked that people come forward with information to assist the investigation.

"It's just very important that we get the support and the help of the community," she said.

The shooting was an unusual occurrence, according to the Rev. Carl Pagan, pastor of the Urban Bible Fellowship Church at the corner of East Eager and Somerset streets. Looking out the church window after services on Sunday, he pointed across the street to a series of row homes that had recently been renovated.

"We praise the Lord for the way the block has been revitalized," Pagan said. "It's a huge turnaround."

Back when the street was full of vacant homes, church members often called police to chase away drug dealers, but there rarely was violent crime, Pagan said. At least, he said, "no violence like this."

While the shooting was eye-opening, Pagan said church members will carry on with their lives — but they'll be careful.

"I'm not afraid, but I'm not foolish," Pagan said.

A church volunteer who gave her name only as "Sister Carol" said she's been mentoring neighborhood children for 11 years. Dozens attend a weekly Friday night Bible study and social hour. She said it broke her heart to learn a child was among the shooting victims.

"There are a lot of decent, hardworking people who live here," she said.

A woman who stood on her stoop and surveyed the street at midday Sunday said her mother has lived on East Eager Street since 1996 and she never remembered a shooting.

"I have a son, he could have been out here," said the woman, who declined to give her name.

pwood@baltsun.com

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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