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2 wounded in Warren drive-by shooting | News, Sports, Jobs

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Staff photo / Bob Coupland
West Market Street from Tod Avenue NW to Highland Avenue was closed to traffic Thursday evening after reports of gunfire where two men were injured and taken to the hospital. Managers at the Hot Dog Shoppe locked all doors to keep customers safe before letting all customers and staff leave and closing for the night following the shooting around 6:30 p.m.

WARREN — Two people were wounded in a drive-by shooting Thursday evening on West Market Street near the Hot Dog Shoppe. Police were called just before 6:30 p.m. after numerous shots were heard in the area, according to a report.

The area by the eatery’s parking lot and along West Market Street near Ford Street and Tod Avenue NW was roped off with yellow police tape. The area of West Market Street from Highland Avenue to Tod Avenue was closed to traffic while Warren police checked the road and parking lot for bullet casings. Police only said it was an active investigation and did not release further information.

Gary McElroy of Brothers Against Violence was attending a meeting at Restoration Christian Fellowship Church when city officials were notified of the shootings and left the meeting. The church is several blocks away from the shooting scene.

“We were at a meeting at the church talking about dealing with the violence in the city and then this happens,” McElroy said.

Residents said ambulances took two men to the hospital.

Police said a vehicle traveling east on West Market Street was shot at by people traveling in another vehicle driving west when one of the vehicles pulled in the Hot Dog Shoppe parking lot. Several residents who live nearby said they heard numerous gunshots, including one man who was mowing his lawn.

“I heard about five or six shots really fast. The gunshots were really loud,” said Del Kelly, who rode a bike to the Hot Dog Shoppe parking lot.

Managers at the Hot Dog Shoppe locked the doors and kept people inside until it was safe to let them leave.

Witnesses said they saw an SUV pull into the parking lot and someone got out of the vehicle and was being chased by people shooting at him.

A dark SUV was in the parking lot with a broken window, and police could be seen looking at it.

Aaron Baumgartner of Warren said he was outside mowing the lawn when he heard numerous gunshots. Lisa Baumgartner said she saw an ambulance quickly pass by so she walked to the Hot Dog Shoppe to see what happened.

Corinne Sexton, general manager of the Hot Dog Shoppe, said she was contacted by restaurant staff and drove to the scene.

“Everyone inside was fine. We had a full restaurant. I was not here when it happened but kept getting phone calls from the manager who was here. Everyone could see something happening in the parking lot and heard shots, but were not sure what had happened exactly,” she said.

Sexton said once it was determined by police that it was safe, people were allowed to leave, including several teenage employees.

Assisting Warren police at the scene was the Ohio State Highway Patrol. Traffic was being rerouted to nearby streets, and traffic was getting backed up on some of them.



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