BATTLE CREEK, Mich. (WOOD) — A Battle Creek man is dead and another person is seriously injured after two shootings within a block of each other.
Battle Creek police say it started around 3:15 a.m. on Memorial Day when they responded to a call that someone had shot at a pickup truck near Poplar Street and Capital Avenue/M-66. Officers say the pickup truck driver, who was not injured, hit the possible suspect and another person with their vehicle. The possible suspect was taken to the hospital with serious injuries and is in police custody. The person with the suspect suffered a minor leg injury. Officers say they have not found a weapon.
Moments later, police say a man was shot and killed a block away, as he was making his way to the scene of the first incident. Officers say the victim had gotten into an argument with a woman who was walking her dog when a man fired numerous shots. The victim, a 42-year-old man from Battle Creek, was taken to a nearby hospital with multiple gunshot wounds. He died there.
Maple United Methodist Church sits between both crime scenes. Church leader Rev. Linda Stoddard says she learned of the violence early Monday morning when a church member called.
“It’s a very sad event and a very sad day for it to take place. But every day is a sad day if someone loses their life,” she said.
Charles Norton lives nearby. He said he heard the gunshots but fell back asleep. He told 24 Hour News 8 he wasn’t surprised when he found out what happened.
“I mean, its Battle Creek in, you know, you hear gunshots randomly all the time. And, holiday weekend, I didn’t think nothing about it,” he said.
It’s a sentiment echoed by Stoddard.
“Sadly not too surprising. We’ve had a number of break-ins of cars here in the church parking lot the last year or so, and that’s concerning too,” she said.
Officers tried to track the gunman in the second shooting using a police K-9, to no avail. They also haven’t recovered the gun.
Officers say the shooter who killed the man was not related to the woman walking the dog or the victim. He’s described as a stocky black man between 230 pounds and 250 pounds. He was last seen wearing a gray sweatshirt.
Anyone with information in either crime is encouraged to call 911 or Silent Observer at 269.964.3888.