published Friday, April 18th, 2014

Willow Street shooting marks No. 35 for Chattanooga

  • photo
    Chattanooga police work the scene of a shooting Thursday near Willow Street between E. 5th and Ivy Streets.
    Photo by Angela Lewis /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

  • photo
    Chattanooga police work the scene of a shooting Thursday near Willow and East Fifth streets.
    Photo by Angela Lewis Foster /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

A shooting that happened in broad daylight late Thursday afternoon on the 300 block of North Willow Street has Orchard Knob residents concerned for the safety of their families.

At 4:23 p.m. Chattanooga police responded to a call about a person shot at 300 N. Willow St. Officers discovered a young black male suffering from a single gunshot wound to the abdomen. The victim was taken to a local hospital and rushed to surgery, according to a news release.

It was the 35th shooting incident involving injuries in Chattanooga this year.

A second shooting was reported about 9 p.m. on East Henderson Drive in North Brainerd. No other details were available.

The investigation is ongoing. No further information about the victim has been released, and police have no suspect information at this time.

"These kids, this is our next generation. They're going to be gone, we ain't going to have no one," said Susan McWhorter, who lives near the intersection of Willow and Ivy streets.

McWhorter said she was standing in her kitchen when she heard the shots, and called 911. McWhorter added that she's had to call the police a number of times in the past because of crimes like robberies and beatings happening in the vicinity.

"This is sad that there's nothing being done about it, and they just keep on doing the same thing," McWhorter said. "If something happens, that's the only time the police come. Other than that they don't give us no street lights, or anything."

Neighbors, who wished to remain unidentified out of fear of retaliation, said that they heard gunshots, and came outside to see the victim slump to the ground at the corner of Willow and Ivy streets. Several of the neighbors said they had medical training, and that they tried to help the victim until police and emergency workers arrived.

The crime scene stretched from Fifth Street to Ivy along Willow. Neighbors said they heard several gunshots, and there were at least seven evidence markers deployed along Willow, most of them near Fifth Street.

The victim had just gotten off the bus, and appeared to be wearing a work uniform, McWhorter said.

Some neighbors reported seeing a white SUV speed off from the area immediately after the gunshots.

On March 21 another shooting occurred on North Willow in the 900 block.

Orlandas Gay, 25, was shot in the left calf in that drive-by shooting while walking down the street at around 4 a.m.

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