Two men were shot to death last night and six other people were wounded when occupants of a black van fired with semi-automatic guns and a shotgun on a group of people near a North Baltimore carryout.
And in South Baltimore, three men were shot by the occupants of a red Volkswagen Jetta while they stood on the corner of Veronica and Joplea avenues in Cherry Hill shortly after 11 p.m.
The shootings near the carryout in the Pen Lucy neighborhood may have been the result of a drug dispute there, said homicide Detective Vernon Holley. No drugs were found on the victims, but police said witnesses reported the shootings were drug-related.
Several people were standing near the China Boy carryout in the 4000 block of Old York Road around 9:25 last night when a black van stopped.
One of the victims told police he was sitting on house steps near the carryout when occupants of the van jumped out of the vehicle and began firing a shotgun and semi-automatic weapons. Witnesses were unsure how many van occupants were involved.
Witnesses told police they heard what sounded like 30 rounds from semiautomatic handguns coming from the van just before it sped off.
On the pavement, police recovered several large caliber shell casings and what appeared to be shotgun pellets. The wall against which the two dead men fell was hit by at least three bullets.
Police said one of men was hit with nearly a dozen bullets and died instantly.
The other died with the word "Nate" on his lips -- the name of a friend he was talking to less than 10 minutes earlier.
A teen-age girl, a woman and a third man fell against a wall alongside the carryout, and a fourth man who ran was found sitting on a bench at Wilson Park, a playground nearby -- all with bullet wounds to their legs, police said.
A fifth man fell after being shot in the leg while attempting to flee the gunfire.
The sixth victim, hit by shotgun pellets, fled to his home on Argonne Drive. Later, he showed up at a hospital for treatment of wounds to the face, back and left leg.
The injured were taken to Johns Hopkins and Union Memorial hospitals, and all were expected to survive.
One of the dead men was identified as Kent Johnson, 34, of the 1700 block of Windemere Ave. The other dead man was identified as Antwan Palmer, 18, whose address was not immediately known.
The wounded included a 16-year-old Danielle Barganier, of the 3200 block of Gulfport Drive in the Cherry Hill section of south Baltimore.
The others were identified as Stacey Branch, 29, also of the 3200 block of Gulfport Drive; Thomas Jones, 33, of the 600 block of Dumbarton Ave.; Nathaniel Perry Phillips, 35, of the 800 block of Argonne Drive; Elroy Baker, 22, of the 600 block of N. Augusta Ave.; and Dawood Thomas, 19, of the 700 block of Cator Ave.
Clifford "Nate" Jones, 29, of the 600 block of Dumbarton, said he was returning to the group outside the carryout after talking to his girlfriend when he heard several shots.
"When I reached my two friends who died," Mr. Jones said, "one of them looked up into my face and asked me to help him."
Mr. Jones said before he could do anything, his friend's head slumped down across the chest of the other victim and he died.
Police made no arrests had been made in the case and were asking the public's help in finding the van.
Southern District police said all three victims in the Cherry Hill shooting were rushed by ambulance to Harbor Medical Center, where they were being treated for gunshot wounds of the legs.
They were identified as Craig Revelle, 18, of the 2300 block of Annapolis Road; Andre Anderson, 17, of the 2500 block of Salerno Place, and Demetrius Johnson, 17, of the 900 block of Joplea Ave.
The three men told police they were standing together when several shots were fired from a Jetta that immediately sped off.
No motive was given for the Cherry Hill drive-by shootings, and no arrests had been made.