GAINES TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — A drive-by shooting near Kentwood Wednesday night left one man injured and a neighborhood in fear.
“This is just too close to home,” one neighbor told News 8. “I’m scared.”
So scared, neighbors on Campus Park Drive are only sharing audio captured by several home security cameras with News 8. They’re worried the suspects or their friends may recognize their homes and retaliate.
It began when three recklessly-driven vehicles pulled on to Campus Park Drive south of 60th Street in Gaines Township at about 9 p.m. Wednesday night. The vehicles eventually stopped in front of the home of their intended target.
There was honking and yelling, followed by gunfire.
The intended target, a 23-year-old man, came out of the house and was shot in the leg.
Five to 10 shots were fired. A number of stray bullets went into neighboring homes. No one else was hurt.
It’s the fourth drive by style shooting in the area in the last year. None of them are connected.
In July, a woman was injured in a drive-by shooting on Campus Park, which is just north of East Kentwood High School. The same home was hit again by gunfire in a drive-by in November, but no one was injured then.
The Kent County Sheriff’s Office said the shooting was not connected to East Kentwood High School.
“We do think at this point, that the shooting that occurred last night was a coincidence. It just happened to be that the intended target was living near the high school. We don’t see any association whatsoever,” said DeWitt.
Thursday night, Crossroads Alternative High School had its graduation at East Kentwood. It comes a year after two people were injured in a shooting outside last year’s Crossroads graduation. Six people between the ages of sixteen and eighteen were arrested in connection with that shooting.
“We are, obviously however, concerned based on history and we will have staff at the graduation to assist and make sure that the activities remain orderly,” said DeWitt.
Neighbors have had it.
“Very disturbing. I’ve been here 20 years and it’s just getting worse,“ said one neighbor.
Deputies are still looking for several suspects.
“Bullets were flying randomly … regardless of if they hit a home or not, it’s a big concern,” said Kent County Undersheriff Chuck DeWitt.
Three vehicles were involved. Two were later found and determined to be stolen.
It is the latest in a growing number of cases involving stolen vehicles being used in crimes that put an entire neighborhood in danger. Vehicles, often times left unlocked or with the keys left inside, are stolen, and used in other crimes.
“Other potential victims that were outside could have been hit. That is where the true danger to the community lies,” said DeWitt.
Both stolen vehicles were recovered later in the city of Grand Rapids. While weary neighbors are concerned, they’re also banding together … keeping an eye out for one another.
“And that’s where were all at now,” said one neighbor. “A neighborhood that sticks together. That’s what we’ve been doing.”
Investigators say if you want to help, take your keys and lock your doors when the vehicle is sitting in your driveway or a parking lot.
If you have any information on the shooting, calls the Sheriff’s Department at 616 632-6125, or Silent Observer at 616 774-2345.
— News 8’s Rachel Van Gilder contributed to this report.