Baltimore police are investigating the shootings of two men killed Wednesday night in separate incidents a block apart in Northwest Baltimore.

Detectives say Austaniel Brown, 22, who last resided in the 4800 block of Beaufort Ave., was gunned down at a playground near the intersection of Park Heights and West Garrison avenues about 9:30 p.m. Shot in the chest, Brown was transported to a hospital where doctors pronounced him dead about an hour later.

The shooting took place in the 4900 block of Park Heights Ave. As officers were still in that area, police said, they heard gunfire nearby at 11:17 p.m.

They fanned out across the neighborhood and found a man shot in the torso in the 3200 block of Spaulding Ave. The man was taken to a hospital, where police said he could not be saved.

Police did not release that victim's name. Homicide detectives are investigating both shooting deaths and have no suspects.

Detectives don't believe the shootings are connected.

"At this point in time, I don't believe they are, but we always look for any commonalities or similarities," Baltimore police spokeswoman Lt. Sarah Connolly said.

The homicides came after a another shooting death in Park Heights early Tuesday morning. In that case, Qureem Holloway, 24, was fatally shot in the head at 1:03 a.m. as he was sitting on his porch in the 4700 block of Park Heights Ave. Police have no suspects in his shooting.

Of Baltimore's nine police districts, the Northwestern District has recorded 27 homicides this year — more than any other.

Connolly said police are increasing patrols in the Northwestern District in response to the surge in violence there.

Police are also investigating the death of a 4-month-old boy in the 900 block of E. Preston St. in East Baltimore. Police had responded to an emergency call reporting the infant not breathing in a home at 3:33 p.m. Wednesday, Connolly said.

"There is no evidence of any foul play at this time," she said.

Detectives are awaiting the results of an autopsy.

jgeorge@baltsun.com

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