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Monday, May 19, 2008

Gunfire sprayed at 'block of kids' in St. Paul; woman, son hit by stray bullets

Please click onto the COMMENTS for the story.


Blogger Bob said...

Woman, son, 18, hit — but it could have been worse
By Mara H. Gottfried
Article Last Updated: 05/16/2008 12:44:14 AM CDT

When Catherine Johnson heard fighting outside her home in St. Paul's Dayton's Bluff neighborhood Wednesday, she ran to get her 2-year-old granddaughter, who had been playing in the yard.

Suddenly, the 49-year-old woman heard gunshots as she carried the tot. She dropped to the ground and put 2-year-old Karma Greenhagen underneath her to shield her from stray bullets.

Karma wasn't hit, but Johnson and her 18-year-old son were each shot in the leg when police say a man opened fire with a semiautomatic handgun into a crowd of people.

"You could feel her shaking," Johnson said of Karma. "She was so scared. The only thing I was worried about was my granddaughter. She could have been killed."

Johnson and her son, Ralphael Johnson, were shot in nearly the same spot — a bullet went through each of their right legs, below the knee. They were treated at Regions Hospital and released Wednesday night. On Thursday, mother and son were wearing bandages around their wounds and Catherine Johnson was on crutches.

The Johnsons said shooting erupted about 6:30 p.m. Wednesday in a crowd in the 700 block of Conway Street while many people were outside, including young children.

"He was just shooting wildly down a block of kids," Ralphael Johnson said. "Luckily, we were the only ones that got shot."

A man fired three to four shots into the crowd as a fight between juveniles broke out in the street, said Peter Panos, St. Paul police spokesman. "Someone shouted,

'He's got a gun!' and everyone started screaming and running," Catherine Johnson said.
The bullet that hit Ralphael Johnson almost struck Jackie Jackson's 4-year-old grandson, she said.

"He just didn't have no heart," Jackson, who lives next to Catherine Johnson, said of the shooter.

A bullet went through the second-floor window of another neighbor of Johnson's, though the residents were downstairs.

Neither Johnson realized immediately that they had been shot. Ralphael Johnson noticed his mother had been shot first.

Catherine Johnson felt pain in her leg but thought she had struck it on something when she dropped to her porch.

"I said, 'Jackie, am I shot?' " Johnson said, referring to Jackson.

"I said, 'Lay there, don't move,' " Jackson said. There were bloodstains on Johnson's porch Thursday from where she had lain.

When police arrived, they saw a man who matched the suspect's description running and they chased him, Panos said. The man was caught and identified as Breland Cortez Burks, 28, of Maplewood.

Police retraced the path Burks had taken and found a gun, Panos said.

Burks was booked into the Ramsey County Jail on suspicion of assault and possession of a firearm by a felon. He has not been charged and the case remains under investigation. Burks has convictions for selling and possessing drugs, fleeing police and disorderly conduct.

Even before the shooting, Catherine Johnson had been considering moving from her home, where she has lived since December — she had gone to a community center earlier Wednesday to get housing listings. Now, she's certain she wants to find a new place to live.

"I couldn't sleep when I got home last night," she said. "I was so afraid."

Mara H. Gottfried can be reached at 651-228-5262.

5:04 PM  
Blogger Bob said...

Somewhere out there is a few code enforcement officers and city council members wishing they knew where this gun man lived so they could condemn his home in hopes he will move to Minneapolis or some place else.

When will we get a REAL crime strategy?

5:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What's the problem Bob? It's just a little disagreement man, chill out a little, you'll live linger.

5:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Send out the code cops!

8:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How could having code enforcement out there stopped this?
It was a drive by, AND the cops found the guy who did it. What would having more cops out there do? Could they have anticipated a random shooting at the precise time and precise place?



9:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

No dumby Eric! Code enforcement takes away the thugs housing and away they go-Or should I say thats what the city would think would happen.

Joking Eric.Yep it was just a joke.

12:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Its a great joke. Real funny but, you have to let me point out the irony.
The irony is, while trying to call me a dummy, you mis-spell the word as 'dumby'. Ironic, don't you think?


2:33 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

700 Block of Conway & Bates, surrounded by Boarded up Vacant Bldgs. Get Real start checking address's As Paul Harvey states:
"NOw here is the Rest of the Story"

2:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Eric relax turbo.I see you spelling incorrectly all the time.Leave it go big man.It makes you look Dumb.

And by the way.Who did the shooting?Was it any of your BROTHERS?

8:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I doubt that I mis-spell words when pointing out how stupid someone else seems.

I'm sure it wasn't either of my brothers they live in Chicago. One is a fireman (like our father), the other is running his business and bitching about taxes, gas for the trucks and new fees that Chicago is proposing.

Neither one has time to bullshit around with these things you find so fascinating. Where were you at the time of the shooting Mr 'No-name Pussface'.
How's that for spelling?


10:32 AM  

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