Seattle has seen an uptick in shootings through mid-May, driven in part by personal disputes between gang members that trigger a cycle of violence, says Lt. Marc Garth Green, who oversees the gang unit, reports the Seattle Times. There have been 35 people shot during that period with three fatalities, compared to 27 with five fatalities at this point last year. Among the 35 shot appear to be six unintended victims.
While Seattle ranks far behind other major cities in gun violence, the spike has generated concern, including a fatal shooting of a 23-year-old man during a large gathering on Tuesday night. Rather than traditional gang battles, police are seeing retaliatory shootings set off by personal grudges, Garth Green said. “We have an event that happens, transpires and then we have the ripple effect, that butterfly effect of what happens after that,” he told a City Council committee yesterday. More injuries are occurring because of the use of high-capacity magazines that fire more rounds, Garth Green said, calling them “kind of the rage.” Garth Green said police are working with other local and federal law-enforcement agencies and the state corrections department to apprehend the most dangerous offenders.