DCCrime4

Police are still searching for suspects in a Dec. 10 shooting of two teenagers on a basketball court in Southeast D.C., said a spokesman for the Metropolitan Police Department on Dec.13.

Lt. Sean Conboy said the offense took place in the 4400 block of F Street, SE. The shooting happened in the evening outside of the Benning Terrace housing complex. According to the spokesperson, a group of young people were playing basketball when they heard gunshots, and fled the court.

The victims struck by gunfire are believed to be 14 or 15 years old, according to the Washington Post. Both victims were breathing and conscious when police arrived and were transported the hospital.

Police are currently looking for two Black male suspects last seen in a burgundy car with unknown paper tags.

Despite the 58 percent increase in homicide cases, and the 3 percent rise in robberies, “there is not a rise in crime in the District as a whole,” Conboy told the AFRO, in an email, on Dec.9. He said that violent crime, which sat at 5,526 as of Nov. 17, has only increased by 1 percent, and is still lower than 2014’s total of 6,194.

However, the total violent crimes reported between Alabama Avenue SE and 46th Street SE, within 1,000 feet of this shooting, doubled since last year, according to a D.C. police crime map. Last year, this area had 22 violent crimes as compared 44.

Deji Ayoku, 22, said youth live in fear of being harmed, even in locations that should be safe play areas. “If people are getting shot at least three times out of seven days then, yeah, I would be scared,” Ayoku said. He played soccer growing up in Prince Georges County, Maryland and his parents sent him to school in Buffalo, New York so he could get away from “bad areas” and trouble.

Ayoku still visits his aunt and cousins who live and work in the District. He said he hopes something will be done about the crime so his family will be safe.