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Half of San Diego’s homicides so far this year happened in a 30-hour span last weekend

In World
February 20, 2024

SAN DIEGO (FOX 5/KUSI) — Half of the city’s homicides so far in 2024 happened in a 30-hour span over Presidents’ Day weekend, a typically long weekend for many people.

The San Diego Police Department responded to the crimes in a statement Monday afternoon:

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“The San Diego Police Department (SDPD) is committed to the safety and well-being of all San Diegans, and our visitors. Violence in any of our communities is not acceptable and will not be tolerated. While there were some violent acts over the weekend, this is not indicative of the San Diego we all know.”

“Three of the cases involved were homicide investigations. While we cannot comment further on the progression of these investigations, the Homicide unit continues to work diligently through evidence and to seek justice in all of these cases.”

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“It is important to remember that criminal investigations take time. We ask for the community’s patience as we continue forward with our efforts to bring justice to each of the victims involved and hold those responsible accountable for their actions.”

There were three homicides just this past weekend:

  • Two shot, one dead near UTC— Feb. 17: Just before 9 p.m., two men were shot, one of them killed outside an apartment complex near the UTC mall. The suspect walked up to a vehicle with the two victims inside and opened fire. Police said the suspect left the scene on foot and headed westbound, but has not yet been caught. SDPD said this was a targeted shooting. A man in his 30s died from the shooting. A 39-year-old man was recovering in the hospital.

  • Man shot, killed in East Village — Feb. 18: SDPD responded to a shooting in front of an apartment building at the intersection of 16th and G streets in East Village around 3 p.m. Sunday. When officers arrived they found a man suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. He was taken to the hospital and later died, according to police. In an update Sunday evening, SDPD described the victim as a 43-year-old black man; his identity has not been released. SDPD say the suspect ran to a nearby vehicle and drove north, then east towards SR-94. The suspect is described as a black man in dark clothing, who left the scene in a silver or grey sedan.

  • Point Loma Vacation Rental altercation — Feb. 19: SDPD responded to a vacation rental in the 2800 block of Poinsettia Drive, where a physical altercation ended in the death of a 38-year-old man. The incident was first reported to authorities around 2:15 a.m. Officers arrived on scene shortly after to find the man unresponsive and not breathing. According to SDPD, he was transported to a nearby hospital, but was later pronounced dead by medical personnel. The victim’s identity is being withheld pending family notification. A man was detained, but has since been released by authorities.

There was also a drive-by shooting at the 12th and Imperial Trolley Station Sunday evening around 7 p.m. No one was hit. The suspects have not yet been caught by police.

In two of the incidents, SDPD said it appeared to be a “targeted attack.”

“With the term targeted attack, it should put less concern to most citizens because there was obviously some type of relationship there,” retired SDPD Lt. Ray Shay said. He explained that if the attacks were targeted, residents should be less concerned, because these were likely not random attacks.

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Data from Crimemapping shows there has been six homicides in SDPD’s jurisdiction so far in 2024. Three of them — 50 percent of the year’s homicides so far — happened this weekend, in just a 30-hour span.

“Long weekends do often result in more people out, more people drinking. A large number of homicides, shooting and assaults are related to alcohol or drug use.”

Lt. Shay added that for a city of this size, San Diego is safe. “San Diego is one of the safest cities in America.”

Looking back at data year-by-year, SDPD recorded 60 homicides in 2023. The highest ever recorded was in 1991 when San Diego saw 167 homicides in a single year.

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“Every family’s greatest fear is realized when these shootings happen in our community. As a former Gun Violence Restraining Order prosecutor in the city Attorney’s Office, I worked hard to prevent shootings like these. Tragedies like these make me even more supportive of crime fighting technology, like Smart Streetlights, that can help us solve these crimes and deliver justice for the victims. We can’t play politics when it comes to preventing and solving deadly crimes—we must support our police department and thereby support the families who suffer from gun violence,” Councilmember Raul Campillo, who represents District 7, responded to the violence in a statement Monday.

For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to FOX 5 San Diego & KUSI News.

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