Weekend shooting in Drew leaves five bystanders injured

By BY RECARDO THOMAS STAFF REPORTER,

A weekend shooting in the town of Drew has left five people injured and has so far resulted in one arrest with warrants issued for three other persons.

According to Captain Edward Dwight Lucas of the Drew Police Department, Lacey Griffin, 35, of Drew is in custody at the Drew City jail, charged with aggravated assault with a $50,000 bond.

Lucas said arrest warrants for aggravated assault have also been issued for Griffin’s brother, Robert Griffin, 33, Memphis--Alexander Primer, 32, Southaven and Mark Webb, 35, whose last known address was in Drew.

He said it is likely that additional charges will be filed. "Possibly looking at charging them too with possession of a firearm by convicted felon. Most of all of them have prior felonies," Lucas said. However, right now he's waiting on the paperwork to validate those additional charges.

Lucas said he and his officers responded to the shooting at around 11:40 p.m., on Saturday at the corner of Wilson Avenue and Union Street. He said when they arrived they found a crowd of people gathered around and two people who had been hit by gunfire lying on the ground.

Altogether, five people were shot. MedStat was called in to transport the injured; however some were taken to the hospital by private vehicle. Lucas said three were treated at local hospitals in Ruleville and Cleveland and released that night. The other two were airlifted to the University of Mississippi Medical Center Hospital in Jackson, but have subsequently been treated and released.

According to him, all of the injured were innocent bystanders. "They were in the wrong place at the wrong time. You know an old saying is when you see a fight you're supposed to run away, well, some run to," he said.

There were reportedly four shooters, with the possibility of a fifth. The investigation is still ongoing. A total of 34 shell casings were recovered in the road. There were 17 .22-caliber shell casings, six .45-calibers ones and 11 .40-calibers shells.

The suspects that are still at large will be placed in the National Crime Information Center and the U.S. Marshals have been alerted to pick them up, Lucas said. "Because this was really reckless, careless and a lot of people could have lost their lives."

Preliminary  indications are that Saturday's violence seemed to stem from an ongoing feud. "I can't really say until I pick up the other two (and) exactly round it down to what is really the motive of the shooting," Lucas said.

He added, "Actually, it is I believe a feud going on between these two groups of guys, which I do know that both of them are associated (with) gangs that will shoot back and forwards at each other."

He said during the course of his investigation he has talked to the victims at the hospital as well as talked to people on the scene. And, according to him, numerous witnesses have come forth who, "Gave us information and put the guns in the proper people's hands that have been charged," Lucas said.

Lucas' department has also subpoenaed video footage from the area businesses and they are reviewing that too.

Lucas said he has noticed an increase in shootings and firearms' use in the community and he is encouraging the citizens to contact his department when they hear something. “All calls will be kept confidential,” he said, “And if they see something getting started, make a call," he added.

He wants the citizens to be more proactive in the neighborhood and community and help him keep the crime down. “If you see something, make a call, say something, the call will be confidential.” Call Lucas at the Drew Police Department at 662-745-2200.

Lucas said the rise in criminal activity can be attributed to several factors including drugs and gang-related activities, people trying to retaliate for crimes themselves and even the heat.

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