Three people were arrested here Thursday in connection with a gang-related shooting incident on Martin Luther King Drive Wednesday evening, said Waycross Police Chief Tony Tanner.
Shavante Anderson, 22, of the 1000 block of Central Avenue, Damerius M. Causer, 22, 1600 Seminole Springs Road, and Phillip White, 25, 306 Draine St., were taken into custody regarding the shooting incident, said Tanner.
They are being charged with gang-related activities under the gang statute for participating in gang-type activities, street gang terrorism and prevention and criminal gang activity, Tanner said.
The gunmen, from the “Gangster Disciples” and “Bloods” street gangs, were involved in a shooting incident in the 600 block of Martin Luther King Drive Wednesday evening as children played nearby, Tanner said. Nobody was hit by any of the gunfire.
Tanner did not want to say “too much about the children,” but he said they were possibly 11 or 12 years old. None of them was hurt during the incident, he said.
Gang-related colors were discovered at the scene, Tanner said, together with multiple shell casings ejected from the shooters’ semi-automatic 9mm pistols, Tanner said.
According to the police report, two pedestrians were fired on by three persons riding in a gray car shortly before 7 p.m. One or both of the pedestrians returned fire but no one was hit in the exchange of gunshots, said Tanner, who added that the incident is believed to have been caused by a previous incident involving a fight.
Anderson is the owner of a gray car that was allegedly occupied by Causer and White at the MLK Drive crime scene, Tanner said.
When police went to a Waycross residence looking for Causer on Thursday they were met by Anderson who claimed Causer was not there, said Tanner.
Causer was subsequently found at the residence and Anderson was charged with obstruction, the chief said.
Both Causer and White are charged with interference with government property and two counts of aggravated assault, said Tanner.
Tanner said he is relieved “somewhat” to have the three in custody but is concerned about what he called “an uptick all of a sudden” in this type of activity.
“The best thing is that we are working with the district attorney’s office and they now have someone who can try gang type cases,” said Tanner. “We are going to try and enforce the law every way we can.”
Tanner said he wants citizens to be on their toes and to watch for groups of people wearing the same colors, having hankies in the pockets of their jeans or shirts, both men and women. “If they do not have a logo on their shirts, people need to be more wary of them than normal,” Tanner said.
Police were looking for the two pedestrians Thursday afternoon, as well as the third person who is believed to have been riding with Causer and White in Anderson’s car, Tanner said.
A recent shooting in the parking lot of a Knight Avenue nightclub claimed the life of Javante Jerome Wade, 20, who was shot in the chest on Feb. 14. The victim was shot by a gunman from inside a car parked in the parking lot, Tanner said.
Two people have been arrested in connection with that shooting. Edgar Velasco-Catalan, 18, and Jonathan Guevara, 19, both are charged with murder in the case, Tanner said.
According to Tanner, both the Gangster Disciples and Bloods have been operating in Waycross for some time.
The Wednesday shooting incident remains under investigation.