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GPD statement on weekend gun violence

Press release from Gainesville Police Department

The Gainesville Police Department (GPD) responded to several incidents involving gun violence over the weekend, highlighting a growing concern for local law enforcement.

On Sunday, February 21, 2021, at approximately 1:30 a.m., while on increased patrol near the Wells Fargo parking lot at 104 N. Main Street, several units responded to a large crowd running north on NE 1st Street away from University Avenue. After arriving to the scene, GPD officers heard a single gunshot coming from the parking lot. After beginning to clear the parking lot and looking for victims, GPD officers heard several more gun shots. Officers then identified a suspect with a gun and began to pursue him on foot. During the subsequent investigation, 1 victim was identified in the Wells Fargo parking garage with non-life threatening injuries. Multiple cars were struck by rounds, with various calibers scattered about the parking lot and two guns located in different locations. The suspect was last seen at 218 NW 2nd Avenue, and a K9 track was unsuccessful.

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This incident remains an ongoing investigation.

During the investigation of the preceding incident, GPD officers discovered that Jeffery Dixon (DOB: 05/01/00), who was walking in the parking garage in the area of the shooting, had a firearm tucked in his waistband. Dixon began to run without provocation. GPD officers caught up with Dixon, who was then no longer armed. Officers located a firearm on the ground nearby. Dixon had been the only one in the area at the time. Dixon was charged with carrying a concealed firearm and transported to the Alachua County Jail without further incident.

On Sunday, February 21, 2021, at approximately 1:32 p.m., GPD officers were dispatched to the 900 block of NE 16th Avenue in reference to a gunshot wound victim. The victim was seen limping eastbound along the south-side sidewalk of NE 16th Avenue, when a motorist stopped to see if the victim was ok. After observing the victim had a gunshot wound to the leg, the motorist called 911. The victim did not identify a suspect in the shooting.

This incident remains an ongoing investigation.

On Sunday, February 21, 2021 at approximately 1:50 p.m., GPD officers responded to the car wash area of the Gainesville Regional Airport (3880 NE 39th Avenue) in reference to an armed robbery that was in progress. After arriving to the scene, GPD officers discovered that Malik T. Brown (DOB: 12/23/97) and Kyra Z. Baker (DOB: 06/24/00) physically assaulted a victim working at the car wash, stealing his phone. During the assault, Brown pointed a handgun at the victim. Brown then physically assaulted a witness after the initial victim was able to fight him off and toss the handgun aside. The suspects then fled the scene and were later stopped by the Alachua Police Department.

Brown was later charged with armed robbery (Felony) and battery on a person 65 years of age or older (Felony) and was then transported to the Alachua County Jail.

Baker had a sworn complaint filed against her for simple battery (misdemeanor).

On Thursday, February 18, 2021, at approximately 6:15 p.m., GPD officers were dispatched to Shands Hospital ER (1515 SW Archer Road), in reference to a person shot. The victim showed up to Shands with a gunshot wound to his hand. The victim indicated that he was walking on a dirt path near 2300 East University Avenue when he was approached by a suspect that produced a handgun and attempted to rob the victim. The victim grabbed the gun and was shot in the hand. Both the victim and the suspect then fled on foot.

This incident remains an on-going investigation.

These incidents follow another violent gun-related incident from last weekend.

On Saturday, February 13, 2021, at approximately 11:22 a.m., GPD officers were dispatched to 600 SW 2nd Street (Porters) in reference to multiple calls of shots fired. After arriving to the scene, a GPD officer heard a volley of several more shots. Shell casings were later discovered, and an unoccupied vehicle was struck several times. No suspect has been identified.

If anyone has information concerning the incident at the Wells Fargo parking lot on February 21, the incident near the 900 block of NE 16th Avenue on February 21, the incident on February 18 at 2300 East University Avenue, or the incident in Porters on February 13, please contact GPD Detective David Blizzard at 352-393- 7710, the Tip Line at 352-393-7700, or, for anonymous reporting, contact Crime Stoppers at 352-372-7867 or https://www.stopcrime.tv/. A reward is still being offered.

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