TULARE COUNTY, Calif. (KFSN) -- In the last week, four people have died, including a 15-year-old, and at least seven people are in the hospital after shootings across Tulare County.
"Each of these cases involves gangs and or drugs," says Tulare County Sheriff Mike Boudreaux.
The first shooting happened on October 4 in Woodville and left one man dead.
Then on October 7, two 15-year-old boys were targeted during a drive-by shooting in Pixley. One was killed and the other was wounded.
Two days later, three men were taken to the hospital after a shooting in the backyard of an Orosi home.
Early Monday morning, a 16-year-old was injured during a shooting in Farmersville.
Just hours later, a shooting in Delano left two men dead and two other victims in the hospital.
"What's sad is that we have victims of crime, sons, brothers that have been shot," Boudreaux said.
Boudreaux says the recent gunfire has a lot to do with drugs coming into Tulare County.
"Fentanyl coming across our borders and coming into our communities," he said. "We see a lot of buzz, movement and people trying to take over territories to sell that particular drug."
At least three suspects involved with the shooting in Woodville are in custody facing murder charges.
Boudreaux says there could be more arrests soon.
His department is stepping up efforts to stop the violence and keep innocent victims from getting caught in the crossfire.
"Our presence is in the heart of what is taking place, and the information we are getting back will help with prosecutions," he said. "We will be sending a clear message about those who are dealing drugs, using guns and involved in gang-related crime that law enforcement is here."