FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Fresno is seeing a dramatic increase in the number of shootings, at least over the last couple days. Four people have been shot in four separate incidents.
The bloody T-shirt left behind in Central Fresno marked the culmination of a violent 28 hours. Fresno police say it started as an argument, escalated to a shooting, and the victim collapsed. Luckily for him, he was right next to the Senior Resource Center, which is a county building with security guards on hand. One of them rushed to help him and call for help. Officers also locked down the resource center and the health center across the street.
Canine officers searched the area and the lockdowns ended when police determined the suspect had taken off. But they still got a start to their investigation, although an imperfect one, from cameras on nearby buildings and in the hands of civilians.
"Unfortunately, cameras can be good in the sense that they absolutely can help us identify someone," said Fresno Police Lt. Don Gross. "[But] they can be pointed in the wrong direction. They can also be too far away or too low in quality to allow us to identify someone."
Police say drug and gang problems frequently drive violence in this area. But this week, they've responded to shootings all over. A 50-year-old man was shot Wednesday night in Southeast Fresno. Police are looking for a few teenage suspects in a West Central Fresno shooting a couple hours before that. And the person who shot and killed Lathan Ma on Wednesday morning in Central Fresno is also still free.
Police don't believe the shootings are all connected, so they're struggling to understand the burst of gun violence. "It is summer," said Lt. Gross. "Temperatures are going up. We're seeing a multitude of issues both from Prop 47 to AB 109."
There's no indication of an outbreak of gang warfare, but police say at least two of the shootings are probably gang-related and they're keeping a finger on the pulse of the streets.
A GoFundMe account has been set up for Lathan Ma. If you would like to make a donation, click here.