NORWALK, Conn. Two young men shot Tuesday night in South Norwalk were targeted in a "blatant disregard for human life" because they weren't from the neighborhood, according to Sgt. Thomas Roncinske, leader of the Norwalk Police detective squad investigating the case. Neither victim of the apparent drive-by-shooting suffered life-threatening injuries. Police have leads they are following, as well as ballistic evidence.
The shooting was in the area of 44 Woodward Ave. It was reported at 11:39 p.m. when one of the victims was found in the parking lot of Klaff's office building at 165 Water St., Roncinske said. The victim was found by people who had parked there to see the fireworks at Calf Pasture Beach, according to a witness who lives in the area. "It was uncomfortable for those walking back to cars among police, ambulance and others ... with the victim right there at the entrance to the parking," the witness said.
The second victim came into Norwalk Hospital when the other was being brought in, Lt. Praveen John said.
The victims, ages 17 and 20, were part of a group of about 15 young people hanging out in front of the South China restaurant at 44 Woodward Ave., Roncinske said. They "were not supposed to be there," Roncinske said, in the view of the people who shot them because they are not from that neighborhood. Police believe the shooters knew they were there and came by in a car and shot at the group randomly. "It wasn't straight-up gang stuff. It was the neighborhood thing," Roncinske said.
The 17-year-old victim has had interactions with police, but no arrests, Roncinske said. The 20-year-old has had no interaction with police. Both live in Norwalk. Neither victim saw the car, Roncinske said.
The witness said there was "complete chaos in the streets" after 12 shots were heard. Three city blocks were closed during the investigation, he said. Those were on Woodward Avenue between Larsen and Grove Streets, and on Burritt Avenue.
Click here to sign up for Daily Voice's free daily emails and news alerts.