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Shooting at troubled intersection of Second and Division escalates

By Alexandria Osborne, Alexandra Duggan, Alayna Shulman and Garrett Cabeza

The Spokesman Review

One person is in the hospital with life-threatening injuries after a shooting occurred Friday night near the troubled intersection of Second Avenue and Division Street in downtown Spokane, police said.

Spokane police Officer Daniel Strassenburg said one person was shot, but his condition was not immediately available. Streets in the area were cordoned off with police tape.

According to KHQ, the victim suffered life-threatening injuries and a suspect is in custody.

The shooting occurred in a place that has long been criticized for crime and drug use. Mayor Lisa Brown declared a state of emergency on Tuesday because of the proliferation of opioids in the neighborhood. Her predecessor, Nadine Woodward, denounced the intersection as a hotbed of “fentanyl foil, feces and tons and tons of garbage.”

A spokesman for Brown was not immediately available for comment on Friday.

Witnesses reported that the incident may have been related to a person filming homeless people in the area.

Camille Blackmore was saving money for a vacation and picking up a DoorDash order for a customer with her 16-year-old daughter when her rear window was shot.

She had to walk two blocks to the restaurant when she saw people fleeing the 7-Eleven on Division Street. Through her window, she saw a man with a selfie stick and a gun in his hand.

Concerned for her daughter's safety, she continued driving away from the scene before she heard a gunshot that did not come from the man behind her.

Her rear window shattered and had a hole in it. Neither Blackmore nor her daughter were shot.

“I'm glad it hit where it did and didn't go through the car,” she said. “I never would have imagined something like this.”

Another witness, Carnell Smith, said a man showed up on the block with a camera sometime around 7 p.m. and pulled out a gun when some people objected to him filming.

The man was standing on the corner near the 7-Eleven filming people who told him to stop, Smith said, but he continued filming. Some people approached the man and again told him to stop filming, Smith said, and the man pulled out a gun, yelled that he felt threatened and pointed it at the people.

The shooting is the latest in a series of violent incidents in the area.

Taylor Rogers, 31, was charged with murder after police said he stabbed 45-year-old Jimmie Bailey about a block north of Second and Division two years ago. Bailey died at the hospital.

Abraham Evaristo-Valderas, 20, is accused of shooting and wounding a man in September near where Bailey was stabbed.

Hunter Wood, 29, was recently sentenced to three and a half years in prison for shooting and wounding a man near Browne Street and Pacific Avenue in January.

Most recently, 18-year-old Richard Smith shot and injured a man in front of the 7-Eleven gas station on the corner of Second and Division in February.