Friday, September 24, 1999

Two are sought in Covington shooting

Pair of teen girls injured in drive-by

The Cincinnati Enquirer

        COVINGTON — Police have two suspects in Wednesday night's drive-by shooting outside the Jacob Price housing complex.

        No arrests had been made as of late Thursday, but the two teen-age girls shot were able to identify the two men in a light gray Buick Electra who fired at them on East Robbins Street.

        Police said the shooting could have been much worse — Kenton County Sheriff's Deputy Jason Russell, helping investigate at the scene, found 11 spent rounds of ammunition on the ground. The bullets were from two semiautomatic handguns, according to a search warrant.

        A Covington officer had stopped the same Buick earlier Wednesday after he thought it might be involved in suspicious activity, said police spokesman Lt. Col. Bill Dorsey. Officer Ronnie Cox let the car and its occupants go, Lt. Col. Dorsey said, after checking the registration and finding no reason to detain them.

        Alexandria Jones, 17, of 12th Street in Covington, was shot in the left hand. She was treated and released. Anita Watts, 17, of Augustine Street, was more seriously hurt. She was scheduled to have surgery on her leg Thursday at University Hospital in Cincinnati.

        The shooting was the second for the neighborhood in three weeks. William LaMar Billups, 24, was shot and killed outside the same complex early Sept. 3. Police also have a suspect in his killing, but no arrests have been made.

        Jacob Price used to be ground zero for the police department's biggest problems on the city's East Side. Police reported earlier this summer, though, that the neighborhood's violent crime had dropped significantly from years past. Major crime in the city decreased by more than 14 percent this year over last, much of which the department attributed to a special detail in the East Side neighborhood.

        “It is disheartening when we have things like (Wednesday) night,” Lt. Col. Dorsey said. “But the East Side didn't get this way overnight, and we're not going to fix it overnight.”


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