Bullets killed two people, injured one man and sent a group of people speeding off to safety in the span of six days.
Police have arrested two people and seized one gun in those incidents.
The unsolved cases are part of a growing list of violent crime investigations for Erie police.
The recent shootings, which occurred between April 12 and Tuesday, come as the weather warms and police expect criminal activity to pick up. They come on the heels of an unusually violent 2011, when 54 people were wounded or killed in 47 shootings in the city.
There have been 10 people killed or injured in at least 15 shooting incidents in the city so far in 2012.
Ongoing efforts to curb gun violence include the continuing employment of an “operational plan,” launched in fall. Erie Mayor Joe Sinnott and Police Chief Steve Franklin said the plan targets underlying crime that leads to violence. It identifies people suspected of being involved in shootings and other violence, and it seeks to get guns off the streets.
Those efforts led to the apprehension between late February and mid-April of 32 people accused of committing violent crimes, including two charged with homicide; and the seizure of nine guns earlier this month, according to police.
The latest spate of shootings started hours after Sinnott and Franklin announced those figures April 12.
- Michael Henry, 31, was fatally shot in his apartment at 415 E. 18th St. on the night of April 12. Rachel A. Kozloff, 30, was charged in the shooting on Monday. Police have not recovered the gun.
- Nelson Irizarry-Reyes, 42, was found shot to death in a van in the 200 block of West 19th Street on the morning of April 14. Police are trying to determine Irizarry-Reyes’ whereabouts that morning as they continue their search for possible suspects in the homicide, Franklin said.
- Tareek A. Hanner, 18, was charged with attempted homicide and other crimes after police said he fired gunshots at an occupied car during an incident in the 800 block of West 17th Street early Sunday morning. No one was injured. Police recovered the gun.
- Marchello Woodard, 30, was shot in the left thigh when three men entered his residence in the 1800 block of McClelland Avenue early Tuesday morning, police said. No one has been charged in the shooting.
New tools in the Erie police arsenal to combat violence include a charting system that Franklin revealed this week. It lists chronic violent offenders in Erie and includes a “scoring system” that assigns points to crimes those people are accused of committing, he said.
Topping the list is shots fired with injury, Franklin said. Also on the list are burglaries committed with a weapon and without a weapon, and drug possession without a weapon.
“Then we know these are the people we need to focus on,” Franklin said.
Information on the chart will let police know “who they are dealing with” if officers come across a person on the list, Franklin said. The information will also be shared with other law enforcement agencies, he said.
Erie police and other local law enforcement agencies got a boost earlier this week, when Erie County Council agreed to accept a $40,000 federal grant the U.S. Justice Department awarded through its Project Safe Neighborhoods program. U.S. Attorney David J. Hickton, of Pittsburgh, was instrumental in securing the grant, as was Assistant U.S. Attorney Marshall Piccinini, who is the chief federal prosecutor in Erie, and Erie County District Attorney Jack Daneri.
The $40,000 will help Erie police and other law-enforcement agencies fund overtime expenses and other costs associated with the anti-violence initiative that Piccinini and Daneri are helping to coordinate through a task force. The initiative includes a focus on chronic violent offenders, truants and fugitives.
“All these things they are already doing,” Piccinini said of the Erie police and other agencies. “This helps them fund the work.”
The program that seeks to get chronic violent offenders off the streets has made a difference, in terms of numbers. Of the 24 such offenders that law enforcement identified in February, Piccinini said, eight remain at large. Of the 24, eight have been jailed while awaiting trial and an additional five have been subject to enforcement while on probation or parole under old charges, Piccinini said. In addition, Piccinini said, three of the 24 offenders were fugitives who have been arrested.
The anti-violence task force is targeting chronic violent offenders because they represent a small number of people who authorities believe are responsible for a disproportionately large number of crimes, especially in Erie, Piccinini said.
As for the recent gun violence, and the arrests that have grown out of it, “what you are seeing is good work by the Erie police in reacting,” Piccinini said. He said the $40,000 grant will help “bolster the efforts.”
The second prong of the anti-violence effort involves a long-term plan to address the causes of crime. That plan is still under development, said Piccinini, who held a meeting on it Friday. Local officials have identified the areas of concern for troubled local youth, including how to address family problems that can lead them to crime.
TIM HAHN can be reached at 870-1731 or by e-mail. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/ETNhahn.
ED PALATTELLA can be reached at 870-1813 or by e-mail. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/ETNpalattella.