By Annaleise Parsons | Staff Writer
In late March and early April, Waco has seen two gang-related shootings and two 18-year-olds have been killed ten days apart.
Last Sunday, Waco PD responded to a shooting that killed 18-year-old Damon Morgan Jr. of Waco.
Morgan was found in a vehicle with a gunshot wound on the intersection of JJ Flewellen Road and Lenox Street near GW Carver Middle School. After being removed from the vehicle by Waco PD and transported by emergency medical services, he later died at the hospital from his injuries.
Officer Garen Bynum of Waco PD said in a press release that the police “believe that this shooting is gang-related and that Morgan was targeted….from a previous incident.”
The police are still working on leads to identify a suspect and do not have any suspects in custody at this time. There were no witnesses.
On March 29, Waco PD responded to another shooting of a 18-year-old on 15th Street and Bagby Avenue at Council Acres Park.The victim was transported to the hospital. He has died from his injuries since.
“What I can tell you about both of these incidents is that they are gang-related and are targeted incidents so they’re definitely looking into connections,” Bynum said in an interview with Siegrid Massie, a LTVN broadcast reporter.
Waco PD has been able to name both incidents as gang-related from monitoring and looking into each person involved in the crime and their past known activities.
“Knowing the suspect’s backgrounds and the known associates of our suspects or our victims…that’s kind of how we’re able to label that gang-related,” Bynum said.
Bynum encouraged Baylor students to be sure to know what’s going around them.
“Be aware of your surroundings. If you think…that you’re being followed, then treat it that way.” Bynum said. “You can never be too careful with what’s going on, and we can’t be everywhere at once.”
Waco PD has increased patrol in the area off-campus where the first shooting occurred.
“Our gang unit and…officers are currently working day and night to get a full grasp on everything,” Bynum said. “We’re doing everything we can to stop the current violence taking place.”
Anyone with information is encouraged to reach out either anonymously at (254)-753-HELP or to Detective Reyes in Special Crimes at (254)-750-7619.