A brazen daylight triple shooting in Edgewood punctuated a weekend marred by violence throughout Allegheny County. Three people were killed in the string of shootings and a hit-and-run.
At Edgewood Towne Centre, three bystanders were injured when they were caught in the crossfire of a Saturday afternoon shooting.
Edgewood police Chief Robert Payne said surveillance video in the plaza showed a man walking past the Villa retail store shortly before 4:30 p.m. when he recognized someone he knew inside and started firing into the store. The man inside returned gunfire.
Chief Payne said the suspects continued shooting at each other outside while running in opposite directions. Neither of the shooters was wounded, but the three bystanders were struck by bullets during the exchange, the chief said.
Chief Payne said one person was shot in the leg, another in the buttocks and the third in the upper torso. The latter victim was taken to UPMC Presbyterian, where he is believed to be in critical condition, he said. Their ages and identities had not been released.
Across the street from the shopping center, SWAT officers entered a home at the corner of McClure and South Braddock avenues in search of the gunmen but did not find anyone. One man at the scene was taken into custody on unrelated warrants. Police are still searching for the suspects.
The afternoon shooting was the county's fifth major incident of the day.
The first incident occurred around 3:42 a.m. in Sheraden when Steven Lee Jr. of McKees Rocks was found with multiple gunshot wounds in the roadway near Chartiers Avenue and Allendale Street. Witnesses said the shooting happened after a fight broke out on a "party bus," according to Pittsburgh police.
Mr. Lee was pronounced dead at 4:15 a.m. No arrests have been made.
Only a few hours later in Monroeville, Mark Rucker Jr., 21, was found dead around 5:30 a.m. in the stairwell of his Cambridge Square housing complex, according to police. Mr. Rucker suffered multiple gunshot wounds. Allegheny County homicide is investigating.
Later in the day, a 40-year-old man was pronounced dead in a hit-and-run that witnesses said was preceded by an argument. According to a witness interviewed by KDKA-TV, the unidentified male victim was seen arguing with another man on Liberty Avenue shortly before being run over around 11:30 a.m. near the Bloomfield Bridge. The victim was transported to a local hospital in critical condition, where he was pronounced dead at 1:23 p.m.
The driver of the vehicle, who left the scene and called 911 from a nearby location, has been interviewed by homicide detectives. No arrests have been made.
And in Turtle Creek, a man was shot in the chest just after 5 a.m. at the Penn Ave Apartments. Stephen Harris, 30, was arrested in connection with the shooting and charged with aggravated assault, attempted homicide and weapons violations.
The victim, whose name has not been released, is in critical condition.
The fact that the violent incidents took place on one of the season's first mild days wasn't lost on witnesses at Edgewood Towne Centre. Robert Black said he was upset that the shooters disregarded scores of children and families who were shopping for Easter, but said the incident could have happened at any time.
"It doesn't matter what day it is, to have stuff like that happen kind of makes you feel kind of uncomfortable about going out," he said.
Deborah Todd: email@example.com or 412-263-1652.