5 Shot, 2 Killed in Northeast Drive-By

Gang dispute suspected

By Matthew Stabley, Pat Collins and Jackie Bensen
|  Wednesday, Oct 14, 2009  |  Updated 8:57 PM EDT
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5 Shot

NBCWashington.com

Police search the scene of a drive-by shooting in Northeast.

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WASHINGTON -- Two people were killed and three were injured Tuesday in an apparent drive-by shooting in northeast Washington.

The victims are all believed to be between ages 14 and 18. Davonta Artis, 14, of the 300 block of 54th Street NE, died at the scene in the 5300 block of Clay Terrace, and another, 18-year-old Daquan Tibbs of the 200 block of 37th Place SE, died after being taken to an area hospital. Davonta's family said he was caught in the crossfire as he returned home from school.

Three were expected to survive, Mayor Adrian Fenty said. They remain hospitalized.

"It's time for this kind of drive through a neighborhood and just open fire on people standing outside to stop," D.C. Police Chief Cathy Lanier said.

She did not rule out the possibility of an exchange of gunfire, noting that multiple shell casings from different kinds of weapons were found.

Police are looking for a black SUV with tinted windows, possibly a Chevy Tahoe, driving in the area around the time of the shooting just before 4 p.m. They reportedly recovered a weapon at the scene.

"This is an area that we were here six months ago," Fenty said. "The news on that day was much better. Chief Lanier and her team were arresting several people, recovering guns and drugs, and doing a huge takedown. What this shows us is there's still a lot of work to be done, despite the great work by the police department."

Police believe the shooting could be the result of a dispute between neighborhoods. There reportedly have been problems in recent days between two rival groups. 

"Unfortunately, a lot of these beefs are not based on much of anything other than a history of disputes, and it takes very little to spark things off," Lanier said.

Police searched the area with K-9 units.

On Wednesday, FBI and D.C. police raided a home in the neighborhood with a gun-sniffing dog and confiscated high-powered assault weapons.

Lanier appealed to the public for help finding the culprits, asking witnesses to call 1-888-919-CRIME.

"It's broad daylight out here," Lanier said. "There's a lot of people out here. If you saw something, call us. Call us anonymously. You don't have to use your name."

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