Criminals putting innocent people in line of fire

Two people were shot to death in a parking lot full of customers Tuesday night.
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Police are concerned for innocent people caught in the line of fire after two deadly shootings in public places this week.

Tuesday night, a gunman opened fire in a convenience store parking lot that was filled with people. Two men died in the shooting.

The ambush happened at a gas station at 19th and Rural streets. One moment, store security cameras show the two victims shopping inside, while their killer was "standing outside waiting on them," said another shopper, James.

James was in the convenience store minutes before the shootings.

"Yeah, he just started firing at 'em," James said as he watches the surveillance video of the shootings. "It's getting crazy out here."

James and other customers were very close to being in the middle of it all. Some of the gunshots went through the victim's car door, but the first rounds he fired appeared as if they could as easily have landed somewhere else.

There is a day care center to the northeast, across the street from the shooting scene.

"Wow," said one mother, picking her children up from the day care.

If the shooting had come an hour earlier, the mother said, "me and my kids would have been getting in the car."

Monday night at 38th Street and Keystone Avenue, two people were shot. Shell casings littered the busy intersection, where a lot of innocent motorists, walkers and shoppers could have been in the line of fire.

Again Tuesday afternoon, hundreds of innocent motorists were put at risk on Interstate 70 when armed robbers who had just stolen video game consoles fled police doing about 100 mph. They flipped their car trying to avoid police stop sticks near Greenfield.

"If you're going to put yourself and public safety professionals at risk for consoles, there's some serious concerns for us," said IMPD Officer Christopher Wilburn.

"The individuals that are involved in the criminal activity believe that they own the streets," said Rev. Charles Harrison with the anti-violence group Ten Point Coalition.

He says the shooters care only about their targets. It's often fueled by retaliation.

"If innocent people are hit, then that's just something they can live with," the pastor said.

"I wish they'd get it together, because they're doing nothing but killing each other," said the mother carefully tucking her children into their car seats across from Tuesday's shooting scene.