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Fresno Police flood streets following weekend gang retaliation shooting

FRESNO, Calif. - Fresno Police are out in full force. They blame a weekend of violence on an ongoing gang war. 

Three separate shootings took place this weekend in Fresno. One man was killed and 11-year-old boy was shot in the arm.

Police believe it is all part of an ongoing feud between West Fresno gangs.

Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer said it all stems from a shooting that took place back in early February.

Dyer said innocent lives are getting caught in the crossfire of the gang retaliation shootings.

His message to these gang members, police are coming for them.

"They will be stopped, they will be arrested, we will seize their firearm, it's a commit," Dyer said.

He said 20-year-old Trazhan Heights - a known gang member - was visiting people at Pioneer Village apartments on Marks and McKinley Avenues.

Dyer said as Heights walked up to the door, an 11-year-old boy was about to open it. He said that's when another individual walked up behind Heights and shot him mulitple times in his back.

Police said a bullet pierced through the rod iron security door - striking the boy in his bicep.

"We're going to not accept or allow these types of shootings to happen in our city," Dyer said.

He said this comes after a series of retaliation shootings that erupted back on February 8. When a teenager was shot while raising funds for a relative with cancer outside a south Fresno store.

The violence then escalated when 24-year-old Anthony Perry Jr. was shot and killed and another man seriously wounded.

The violence continued on when 20-year-old Zurich Chatman was mistakenly shot and killed outside a church on Lee Street the following weekend.

The violence had slowed down since three men were taken into custody at the end of February during a major police crackdown.

Police believe Heights murder was in retaliation to Chatman's death.

Chatman's funeral was Friday.

"We had information that if we did not make an arrest or solve the case by the time of the funeral, that there would be retaliation," Dyer said.

Police said they're working with the FBI to solve this case.

Dyer said the department is ramping up resources, once again to suppress any upcoming retaliation.

He said it's worked in the past.

"Whatever proactive resources we have in this department are being dedicated to stopping gang violence associated with West Fresno gangs," Dyer said.

Believe it or not, Dyer said gang shootings are down 32 percent compared to this time last year.

Police are still searching for the suspects in Saturday's shooting. 

If anyone has information you are asked to call CRIME STOPPERS at 498-STOP.


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