Crime Files Network

Archive for the ‘SHOOTINGS’ Category


Executed … this frame grab shows Najiba (centre) sitting at the edge of a ditch shortly before being executed after being accused of adultery with a Taliban commander. Photo: AFP/Parwan Provincial Government

There sure is nothing like a public execution to arouse the dear public. Two hundred years ago, we’d be pushing our way to the front of the gallows or the guillotine’s platform just to hear the crack of the neck being snapped or to gasp as the doomed head bounced into its basket. If providence allowed, we’d even get close enough to spit in the face of the condemned.

The king/crook/traitor is dead! Hooray!

But, now, with our supersonic laptops and co-joined online lives, we can sit in private, trembling with pre-emptive disgust, and watch as those arousing words:  “This video contains images with may distress some viewers” scroll onto our screen.

Like that genre of film called Horror that encourages us to enjoy the murder and dismemberment of various poor sods, we squint and hide behind fingers but, as our bravery grows, we drop the pretence of shock.

And, here, we see the young woman by the ditch gunned down by the furious cuckold, his grey-speckled beard suggesting there was quite the age diff between he and his 22-year-old wife.

Of course, we don’t need a gang of religious zealots in a backward craphole to tell us that old men marrying young gals always ends badly.

Can you imagine the awkward conversations? Old guy remembers, with a beatific smile, the nineties, like before the Americans came and screwed up everything, when any Taliban could freely fire his Kalishnikov into any woman who flashed a friendly smile or was stupid enough to walk to school.

Get with the times, Mr Afghan man!

A far as deaths go, it was completely different to the way America dispatches its condemned: 20 years on death row, appeal after appeal before, finally, a fat-saturated last meal and a couple of guards trying to find a arterial highway for their killer cocktail.

After the grainy video footage was posted on every news portal online, the usual pious chorus erupted. Barbaric, brutal, un-Islamic etc.


I just can’t believe anyone is shocked anymore about what happens in kooky, tribal, medieval Afghanistan. Men are bad screwed up enough about women and sex in the hip, open west as it is, let alone in the land time forgot.

Yesterday, a Sydney man was found not guilty of murder after knifing a man he found tooling his wife. Like, express disappointment at their behaviour or maybe, in the fire of fury, punch the man in the nose, but to kill someone for adultery? And then for the killer to go unpunished? Hoo! Sounds like Afghanistan!

Does anyone really believe the $17 billion allocated a couple of days ago by the world’s powers toward civilian aid and to the advancement of women’s rights in Afghanistan, will do anything except maybe line the treasure caves of various warlords?

In 2014, when we finally split the joint, it’ll be biz as usual: public executions in stadiums, the poisoning of little girls, honour killings etc.

Get used to it. And enjoy online!

Dead … this frame grab shows Najiba dead seconds after being shot by a man in an execution condemned by the Afghan government as un-Islamic and inhuman. Photo: AFP/Parwan Provincial Government

“Within one hour they decided that she was guilty and sentenced her to death. They shot her in front of villagers in her village, Qol,” she said, adding that the execution took place late last month.

Following the shooting, a villager handed the video over to the provincial government and “the security forces are preparing a big operation to find the culprits”, she said.

The video opens with the woman, wrapped in a grey shawl, sitting at the edge of a ditch in a village surrounded by dozens of men, some perched on rooftops for a better view.

Watching ... this frame grab shows a gathering of people watching the execution by gunfire of a woman married to a member of a hardline Taliban militant group.
Watching … this frame grab shows a gathering of people watching the execution by gunfire of a woman married to a member of a hardline Taliban militant group. Photo: AFP/Parwan Provincial Government is Australia’s divorce and family law service directory linking visitors to a wide range of suppliers needed during and after divorce

As she sits with her back to the crowd a bearded man is seen reading verses from the Koran condemning adultery, before saying: “We cannot forgive her, God tells us to finish her. Juma Khan, her husband, has the right to kill her.”

He approaches to within a couple of metres of the woman, says “Allahu akhbar” (God is greater), aims and fires twice, missing each time. The third shot hits her in the back, she flings her arms wide and collapses.

He then fires another six shots into her body as the crowd cheers wildly, shouting “Long live Islam”, “Long live mujahideen (holy warriors)”. The gunman then fires four more shots into her body.

The government issued a statement on Sunday saying it “strongly condemns this un-Islamic and inhuman action by those professional killers and has ordered the Parwan police to find the culprits and bring them to justice”

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The Afghanistan Human Rights Commission also expressed outrage. Its executive director Mohammad Musa Mahmodi said: “We condemn any killings done without proper trial. It is non-Islamic and against all human rights values.”

Hague shocked and disgusted

British Foreign Secretary William Hague said on Sunday he was “shocked and disgusted” by reports that the Taliban had executed the woman.

The British government condemned the “deplorable” action and called upon Afghanistan’s rulers to bring the perpetrators to justice.

“I am shocked and disgusted by [the] reports,” Mr Hague said. “Such deplorable actions underline the vital need for better protection of the rights of women and girls in Afghanistan.”

He explained that the British government was working with its Afghan counterparts, NGOs and international partners to improve the status of women in Afghanistan.

Clinton makes plea for women

The killing came as US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made a powerful plea on Sunday for the rights of women in Afghanistan, using a global forum to insist that they must be part of the country’s future growth.

Mrs Clinton, who was addressing a world conference in Tokyo on Afghanistan’s future, said: “The United States believes strongly that no nation can achieve peace, stability and economic growth if half the population is not empowered.”

She said the way forward “must include fighting corruption, improving governance, strengthening the rule of law [and providing] access to economic opportunity for all Afghans, especially for women”.

“All citizens need to have the chance to benefit from and contribute to Afghanistan’s progress. The United States will continue to stand strongly by the women of Afghanistan,” she added.

But the execution video could renew concerns that Kabul is not doing enough to protect women, particularly from so-called honour killings, which were common during the Taliban regime that ruled from 1996 to 2001.

The Taliban have since waged an insurgency against the government of President Hamid Karzai, which is supported by about 130,000 NATO troops.

According to figures provided by the US State Department, out of the 8 million students enrolled in schools today, nearly 40 per cent are girls. That contrasts sharply with 2002 when there were only 900,000 children in schools, virtually none of them girls.

The US says there are now 175,000 teachers in Afghanistan, about a third of them women, thanks to $US316 million ($310 million) spent on education initiatives.

US officials said Mrs Clinton had raised the issue of women’s rights with Mr Karzai during her brief visit to Kabul on Saturday, warning that they were a litmus test for the country’s progress.

The Tokyo talks have raised pledges of $US16 billion in civilian aid for the conflict-torn nation over the next four years.

Representatives from more than 80 nations and international organisations gathering in the Japanese capital later adopted the “Tokyo Declaration”, pledging support and cash for Kabul.


In the words of a senior officer, the best weapon NSW police have in the fight against crime is “in-your-face policing”.

This, said south-west metropolitan region commander Frank Mennilli, led to almost 1000 charges being laid over the weekend as police state-wide went out to “crack down on crime”.

Under the guise of Operation Spartan, established in January following a spike in gun crime and increased gang-related activity, police hit the streets in big numbers – about 3000 officers from across the NSW Police Force tasked with flexing some law-enforcement muscle.

Crackdown ... a policeman guards two suspects.A policeman guards two suspects.

But the action, it seems, was primarily designed to round up those already known to be likely mischief-makers, targeting “people with outstanding arrest warrants” and carrying out “bail compliance checks”.

Mr Mennilli explained Operation Spartan officers carried out 1871 inspections of businesses such as clubs, hotels and tattoo parlours, as well as 993 visits to individuals with links to gangs.

“In addition, we conducted 1783 person searches and 419 vehicle searches … we seized 14 firearms, 17 knives, quantities of illegal and prescription drugs and recorded 1401 intelligence reports,” he said.

"In-your-face policing" ... Operation Spartan.“In-your-face policing” … Operation Spartan.

Mr Mennilli said the operation was a huge success, saying that it was not just about arrests but about intelligence gathering too.

“Every new piece of information we collect helps us to better understand these criminals, their gangs and their methodology, which is the key to dismantling and disrupting criminal activity,” he said.

“We will not rest until we have all illegal firearms and weapons off our streets and all the people involved in these crimes are found, locked up and put before a court.”

As a result, 555 offenders were arrested with 908 charges laid.

In addition, more than 23,000 random breath tests were conducted with 107 people charged with drink-driving.

NSW Police periodically conduct such blitzes, the latest coinciding with an increased focus on gun-related crime following months of tit-for-tat shootings.

Last week, raids on properties connected to known members of outlaw motorcycle gangs prompted claims of a PR exercise, which were rejected by Assistant Commissioner Mal Lanyon.

Teen and boy shot by police in car chase

Police shot a boy and a young man at Potts Point in Sydney’s east this morning after the car they were in drove on to the footpath to escape pursuing officers.

Police said a 14-year-old driver and his 18-year-old front-seat passenger were taken to hospital with gunshot injuries after officers fired shots at their car, which was driven on to the footpath of Darlinghurst Road shortly after 4am.

The 14-year-old was shot once in the chest and once in the arm, and the 18-year-old was shot once in the neck, police said. It is reported that the young offenders were aboriginals.

Witnesses reported that the Honda Civic sedan, which was later confirmed stolen, entered heavy pedestrian traffic along the footpath and hit a woman, 29, who was taken to hospital with chest injuries. Police said the woman was pinned under the car.

Police said four other males, aged between 13 and 24, were in the back seat of the car at the time. They were uninjured and are being interviewed.

The injured are being treated at St Vincent’s Hospital. The boy is in a serious but stable condition, while his passenger’s injuries are not life-threatening. The condition of the woman is not known.

Assistant Commissioner Mark Murdoch said: “People literally jumped for their lives.

“Police pursued that vehicle on the footpath by foot, they attempted to stop the vehicle.

“That vehicle struck a female pedestrian. That female pedestrian was pushed under the front of the vehicle. In an attempt to protect that person they [police] discharged a number of shots into the vehicle.

“Whether that decision turned out to be the right decision is a matter for the critical investigation team … My advice is that the police has little other option.”

Police confirmed the males are indigenous and were unarmed at the time.

Assistant Commissioner Murdoch said the two constables recognised the Redfern youths driving the car.

“The police recognised the vehicle, they recognised the people in the car,” he said.

“I would suggest, given the driver of the vehicle was 14, that’s probably a good reason why they approached the car.

“As they approached the car, it is my information that the people in the car saw the police approaching; they’ve taken action to avoid apprehension.”

Assistant Commissioner Murdoch said officers would be in touch with the Redfern community to fill them in on what happened.

“I would hope [the community] understands that we need to investigate exactly what happened and why it happened,” he said.

“They would also understand, given the relationship that police have with the Redfern community, is that as soon as we know something, they’ll know. And they get the right information rather than speculate.”

Assistant Commissioner Murdoch said more officers would be deployed in Redfern tonight if the need arose.

He described the shooting as a tragedy.

“[It’s] an absolute tragedy for all involved,” he said.

“No one likes to see this sort of thing happening, particularly in such a public area. The police don’t go to work expecting to shoot someone.”

Despite numerous shootings in Sydney recently, Assistant Commissioner Murdoch said the busy entertainment precinct in Kings Cross was still safe.

On April 9, a man was shot in the shoulder at Kings Cross nightclub Bada Bing.

Police treat an injured male after the shootings in Kings Cross.Police treat an injured male after the shootings in Kings Cross. Photo: Channel Ten

Yesterday the NSW government banned Bikie gangs from owning tattoo parlours and wearing their colours in licensed Kings Cross venues after two drive-by shootings hours earlier.

Police believed those attacks were part an ongoing dispute between rival gangs, the Hells Angels and Nomads.

A total of 52 shootings have rocked Sydney this year with most attributed to criminal organisations and gangs.

Police officers have also been involved in the gun violence. Ryan Pringle, who was armed with a knife and a crossbow, was Tasered by police before they shot him dead at a commune in northern NSW on Monday.

On March 25, a senior police officer shot and killed 34-year-old man Darren Neill at the Westfield shopping centre at Parramatta.



A man hurled grenades at a bus stop in the Belgian city of Liege and sprayed gunfire at a square crowded with Christmas shoppers and children on Tuesday, killing three people and wounding 123 others before fatally shooting himself in the head.

It was not clear what his motive was, but Belgian officials said there was no indication it was an act of terrorism.

Witnesses said the gunman, named as Nordine Amrani, 33, began his attack near the bus stop at Place Saint Lambert, a shopping area and the site of the Christmas market and main courthouse – sending shoppers scattering to flee the bullets.

Amrani, released from jail about a year ago after being convicted of possessing weapons illegally, ended it by shooting himself in the head with a handgun, the witnesses said.

“He had a bag. He got a grenade out of his bag. He threw the grenade at the bus stop. Then he had a Kalashnikov (rifle). He shot in all directions. Then everyone ran to try to save themselves. Then he got a revolver out and put a bullet in his head,” one witness told RTBF radio.

The victims were a 15-year-old boy, who died at the scene, a 17-year-old boy and a 75-year-old woman who died in hospital. A justice official said 123 had been wounded.

Liege’s mayor, Willy Demeyer, said the two boys had been sitting school exams nearby just before being caught in the attack.

Random killings of this kind are relatively rare events in Belgium. Most recently, in January 2009, a man stabbed to death two infants and a woman and injured 13 at a nursery in the town of Dendermonde.

Gaspard Grosjean, a journalist for a local Liege newspaper, was in the square moments after the attack.

“We saw people with bullet wounds in their shoulders, their hands,” he said, adding that he had seen one body. “I see people completely scared, people are crying, everyone is on their phones.”

Justice officials said Amrani had been summoned in the morning to appear before police, an appointment he did not make.


Friends and neighbours of a gunman who was shot dead by police as he fired randomly at passing cars on a Hollywood street – critically wounding one man – say he was deeply troubled by the recent break-up with his girlfriend.

US authorities released the identity of Tyler Brehm, 26, and examined his body, Los Angeles County Coroner’s Lieutenant Larry Dietz said, a day after the shoot-out at Hollywood’s intersection of Sunset and Vine.

Investigators have not released a motive for Friday’s attack.

Shot ... police officers advance on Tyler Brehm.
Shot … police officers advance on Tyler Brehm. Photo: AP


Friends and neighbours said Brehm was stung by the end of the relationship.

“He wasn’t a bad guy, he just got fed up,” stunned friend and neighbour Christina Mesropian said after a KNBC-TV news crew told her the gunman was Brehm.

Ms Mesropian said he was struggling to get over a break-up with girlfriend Alicia Alligood.

Hollywood shoot-out ... Tyler Brehm's body lays on the ground after he was killed by police.
Hollywood shoot-out … Tyler Brehm’s body lays on the ground after he was killed by police. Photo: AFP

“He was like ‘Ah, I’m over it, I’m over it,’ but I could tell he wasn’t over it,” Ms Mesropian said.

Ms Alligood, did not appear on camera, but told a KNBC reporter that she and Brehm had “been dating for 4½ years; we broke up recently”.

Ramon Hernandez, who lived in the apartment next door to Brehm, said the couple had recently moved out. He told KABC-TV that they kept to themselves but at times he heard them arguing.

“I could tell that he was an unstable person,” Mr Hernandez said, “but I don’t know the details on what actually made him snap.”

Brehm walked down the middle of Sunset Boulevard, firing on motorists with no clear target. He injured three of them until two police officers who happened to be in the area – an off-duty motorcycle officer working on movie set security and an LAPD detective – shot and killed him, authorities said.

In amateur video taken at the shooting scene, the gunman appeared to have short hair and wore jeans and a white tank top.

He paced back and forth near the busy intersection, firing close to 20 rounds from what appeared to be a .40 calibre handgun, police said. Several witnesses reported seeing him reload at least once.

“He was screaming he was going to die and that he wanted to die,” Gregory Bojorquez, a photographer who captured images of the aftermath, told the Los Angeles Times.

He continued shooting at vehicles and in the air when he was confronted by the officers.

They ordered the suspect to stop and drop his weapon. He was shot when he pointed his weapon at the officers. The gunman was pronounced dead at the scene, Los Angeles police Officer Cleon Joseph said.

No officers were hurt.

John Atterberry, 40, the driver of a Mercedes-Benz, was wounded in the face and upper torso and taken to a hospital in “guarded and critical condition”, police said in a statement.

Mr Atterberry was at Cedars-Sinai Medical Centre and remained in a critical condition, hospital spokeswoman Simi Singer said.

Ms Atterberry is a music industry executive who has worked with artists such as Brandy, the Spice Girls and Jessica Simpson, according to the trade paper The Hollywood Reporter and other media outlets.

A truck and another car were struck by bullets.

Two people were treated at the scene for minor injuries. One man suffered a grazing wound to his left thigh when a bullet passed through his car door. Another man had minor cuts from broken glass after a bullet struck the driver door where it met the window.


A British couple honeymooning on an exotic island were forced to kneel beside their beds before they were shot by two robbers – all for a small amount of cash, a camera and two mobile phones.

A British coroner has ruled the deaths of Ben and Catherine Mullany, both 31, on the island of Antigua were “unlawful killings”.

The couple were given the trip to the island in the West Indies as a gift from their families, only to be shot in their luxury chalet at the Cocos Hotel on the final night of their holiday on July 27, 2008.

Keniel Martin  leaves the High Court of Antigua and Barbuda in St John's, Antigua,  where he stands accused along with Avie Howell of the murder of Britons Ben and Catherine Mullany in July 2008.Guilty … Keniel Martin. Photo: AP

Mrs Mullany died in the chalet, while Mr Mullany died a week after he was flown back to their home of Swansea, Wales.

The inquest heard that Mrs Mullany, a doctor who was training to be a GP, and Mr Mullany, a student physiotherapist and former soldier and policeman, were innocent victims, the BBC reported.

“Both were forced to kneel to the side of the bed and were shot in the back of the head,” South Wales Police PC Emma Warner told the inquest.

“Three spent cartridges were found on the floor of their chalet and there was damage to the bathroom door where it had been kicked in.

“The safe was open and property had been taken, including a quantity of cash, a digital camera and two mobile phones.”

Kaniel Martin, 23, and Avie Howell, 20, were charged soon after the killings and were convicted of murder after a trial in Antigua in July. They are due to be sentenced next week.

Coroner Philip Rogers said the shooting was a “tragic and sad event”.

“They were both shot at the same time in the course of the robbery at their chalet.

“Ben and Catherine’s parents have been through a great deal in the past three years waiting for the killers to be brought to justice.

“There is only one verdict – that they were unlawfully killed.”

The Daily Mail reported the couple’s family released a statement saying: “Ben and Cath will live on in our hearts forever.”

The murders of the Mullanys was a huge news story in Britain in 2008, as Mrs Mullany was the first visitor to be killed on the island in more than a decade.

The shootings came in the middle of a huge crime wave on the island.

“We’ve had killings before but not like this – not visitors,” Assistant Superintendent Chas Tanet told The Guardian at the time.

“It’s shocking. It’s not a thing you want to see happen ever again.

NOTE-Same should be done to the killers. Execute them in the street…


“Silencers”, also known as “suppressors”, on guns don’t make them anywhere near silent.  Silencers primarily only suppress the noise due to the pressure wave from the rapidly expanding propellant gases.  This is only a portion of what makes a gunshot loud.  The primary other source of noise in a gunshot is the sonic crack created by the bullet (for bullets that exceed the sound barrier, which is a large majority, unless they are modified to specifically be subsonic).

Other typically minor noise makers from the gunshot are the mechanical action; the sound of the bullet striking the target; and the flight noise of the bullet itself, which typically is only audible if the bullet comes relatively close to the person hearing it (depends on the caliber of bullet for how close that needs to be).  The mechanical action can be quite loud on some types of fire arms, such as a Sterling Submachine Gun, which produces over 115 dB from the firing mechanism alone.  The sound of the bullet striking the target can range from mostly in-audible to every bit as loud as the original gunshot.

How Much Sound Do Gun Silencers Actually Suppress

Modern day silencers typically can reduce the noise about 14.3-43 decibels, depending on a variety of factors, such as whether it’s a subsonic bullet or not; length of the barrel/silencer;  etc.  The average suppression level, according to independent tests done on a variety of commercially available suppressors, is around 30 dB, which is around the same reduction level of typical ear protection gear often used when firing guns.

That’s actually pretty significant considering the decibel system is a logarithmic scale; so, for example, 200 dB is 1000 times louder than 100 dB, not double, and a reduction of 40 dB is more like 1/100th of the original sound.  However, for most commercially available fire arms and cartridges, this ends up only reducing the noise level to somewhere in the range of 130-150-ish dB for a supersonic cartridge and 117-130-ish dB for a subsonic cartridge.  For reference on just how loud that is, an ambulance or police siren is typically between 100-140 dB.  So this isn’t exactly the “whoosh” sound Hollywood depicts.  Given that hearing loss can occur as low as 85 dB, it’s typically recommended that even with a silencer on a fire arm, that the shooter still wears some sort of hearing protection.

Why Use a Gun Silencer

So if they don’t make them anywhere near silent, why do people use them?  It turns out, there are a lot of advantages to silencers, particularly for military usage, including:

  • A typical reduction in recoil of around 30%, which increases accuracy and reduces firing fatigue on the person shooting.
  • Drastically reduced flash, which can be a huge advantage for military personal, particularly in night operations or for snipers.  By getting rid of most of the flash, firing won’t reveal your position from a visual standpoint.  This can also be a critical feature if firing around explosive gases, particularly if, before firing each round, you put a piece of tape over the silencer opening to help prevent the gasses from entering the barrel of the gun.
  • Silencers help significantly in masking the position of snipers, not just because of getting rid of the flash, but also for audible reasons.  Snipers can effectively mask their position by positioning themselves such that the bullet will pass by large hard objects, which will reflect the “crack” sound from the supersonic bullet much more effectively than the “bang” sound from a non-suppressed shot.  This will make it impossible for an observer to tell which direction the shot came from, because it will sound like it’s coming from every direction in a perfectly chosen environment.  Wolves actually use a similar technique in modulating their howls to make it sound like there is a huge pack of wolves surrounding something, instead of just one or two.
  • Suppressors change the perceived sound of a gunshot enough that most people wouldn’t recognize it as such, particularly in a city environment where there are numerous ambient noises.
  • Firing an unsuppressed gun in a small closed area, such as a bedroom or the like, can permanently damage hearing due to the noise being reflected back at the shooter at close range; this can also disorient the person firing the weapon.  Using a silencer significantly reduces this risk.

How Gun Silencers Work

Gun suppressors work primarily by slowing the release of the propellant gases, resulting from firing a bullet, and converting some of the noise energy to heat.  The latter method is achieved by trying to trap or direct the sound through specially designed chambers or baffles; the sound is then ultimately converted to heat in these chambers.   The former method is achieved by expansion of the cavity the air is being rushed through, typically by just making the chamber diameter bigger than the barrel’s diameter and by creating turbulence as the air rushes through the suppressor.

Some of the most advanced suppressor silencers will also try to get rid of some of the sonic crack by either shifting the phase of the sound, to get it out of human range, or reflecting it back onto itself, to try to cancel it out (frequency shifting and phase cancellation).  However, neither of these methods are terribly effective, to date.  The phase cancellation is particularly difficult because of dealing with a wide range of sound waves, rather than pure tones.  Silencer manufacturers claim to have effective phase cancellation, but, to date, this isn’t backed up by any real independent scientific evidence and seems to be more just a marketing tool.

  • Although snipers can use a silencer and large solid objects to help reflect the sonic crack to mask their location, the U.S. currently has a “Boomerang” system, which deploys a series of microphones around a potential sniper target area.  This system can almost instantly locate the origin of any gunshot within the system’s sensor range.
  • The first sound silencer was invented by Hiram Maxim, in 1910.  Maxim supposedly got the idea for a gun silencer after flushing a toilet and watching the water spin away.  He then thought he could create a similar effect except swirling sound, which he theorized would reduce the sound of a gun shot.
  • Automobile mufflers were designed around the same time as gun suppressors and both use many of the same techniques for reducing noise.


A family argument in Ohio has ended in the shooting deaths of eight people, including an 11-year-old, US authorities say. Two people were wounded.

One person shot five people dead in one location, then two more were killed nearby before police killed the gunman, police chief Michael Mier told WKYC-TV.

The shootings happened in the wooded, residential neighbourhood of Copley Township, outside Akron. The area remained blocked off by police on Sunday afternoon.

Members of the Akron police department talk to an unidentified woman who claimed to be a relative at the scene of the multiple shooting in Ohio.Members of the Akron police department talk to an unidentified woman who claimed to be a relative at the scene of the multiple shooting in Ohio. Photo: AP 

Sergeant Eric Goodwin did not know the conditions of the wounded, but said he believed there were no more victims.

“As far as I know, everyone’s accounted for,” he said.

He gave no more details, including how the gunman and victims were related, their names or what led to the argument.

“That’s still under investigation,” he said.

Copley Township is a town of about 14,000 people outside Akron, about 65 kilometres south of Cleveland.



Five public shootings in as many days have prompted police across western Sydney to join forces in a bid to prevent an innocent bystander from being wounded or killed.

Five drive-by shootings have taken place in the Fairfield and Merrylands areas since Friday, leaving a number of homes and businesses riddled with bullets.

Detective Superintendent Peter Lennon, Fairfield Local Area Commander, said somebody’s child, mother, girlfriend or boyfriend would eventually fall victim to the violence.

“Very, very soon someone is going to be killed or seriously injured,” Detective Superintendent Lennon told reporters today.

Police from the two areas and detectives from State Crime Command established Strike Force Restore today to determine if any of the shootings were linked.

The most recent incident took place early today when the front of a pizza shop was shot up, just before a home in Lachlan Street, Bossley Park was sprayed with bullets.

No one was injured in either incident.

Police are also investigating a sixth shooting in Merrylands that was the result of a domestic argument between two men.

Officers called to Barcom Street by concerned residents about 10.30pm yesterday found a number of spent shell casings on the road.

At 10.35pm, two men in their early 20s arrived at Westmead Hospital with gunshot wounds. One had been shot in the face and shoulder, and the other had been shot in the back.

A 27-year-old Merrylands man is helping police with their inquiries.

Police are awaiting ballistic reports to determine if the same weapons were used in any of the drive-by shootings.

Detectives say they have a difficult task ahead of them because some members of the community are afraid of coming forward.

“The one issue that we do have as a police force is that there are victims, witnesses and members of the community who know what has taken place but will not come forward and assist the police,” Detective Superintendent Lennon said.


Samaritan shot while feeding

homeless loses fight for life

July 29, 2011 – 1:27PM

The man shot while on his nightly mission with his family to feed the homeless has died from his wounds, police say.

Paris Powell, 29, was removed from life support late on Wednesday after the attack in the Californian suburb of Oakland.

He was shot in the head during a drive-by shooting early as he and his pregnant 35-year-old wife and her three- and seven-year-old daughters were serving a hot meal to a 61-year-old former homeless man they had befriended more than a year ago.

His wife and the three-year-old suffered arm wounds. The other child and the older man were not hurt. No arrests have been made, and police still do not have a motive.

Distributing food to the homeless was something Powell, known as “Brother John”, and his wife had been doing for a while.

His aunt, who asked that her name not be used, said her nephew, who she helped raise and saw before he died, was doing volunteer work instilled in him since he was a little boy.

“This is just tragic,” the aunt said. “He didn’t bother anyone. He was doing the right thing and to be taken out like that, it’s not right. No one has the right to take another person’s life.”

She said Powell, who met his wife about three years ago, was looking forward to the birth of his child.

He worked construction jobs and as a hauler, and they used their own funds and got donations to buy the food they cooked for the homeless and others.


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