Shooting on Madison’s east side leaves 4 injured, Koval concerned

Four people injured, three still hospitalized

Madison police Chief Mike Koval on Sunday afternoon described a gang-related shooting on the city’s east side that injured four people as “concerning.”

At a press conference, Koval said three of the four victims remain hospitalized, while the fourth has since been released.

Koval said the victims are “less than forthcoming in cooperating with the investigation” and that police believe those involved know each other.

Police are continuing to investigate the shooting, but Koval said the incident may have started with hostilities at a party in Dodge County Saturday night. All four of the victims are 26- to 28-year-old men from Madison, he said.

Police said officers responded to a report of multiple shots fired at the BP gas station at 4222 East Washington Ave. around 3:08 a.m. Responding officers saw multiple vehicles leaving the area, the release said.

One victim was found at the scene, while two others arrived on their own at Meriter Hospital, police said. A fourth victim arrived at a UW Health facility. All four suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

More than 20 bullet casings from at least three different weapons were found at the scene, police spokesperson Joel Despain said.

Koval said he was “mystified” that the incident wasn’t a homicide given the number of shots fired.

A UW Health spokesperson told News 3 that a person was brought to the UW Hospital on Highland Avenue after 3 a.m. with a gunshot wound, but could not confirm if that person was the fourth victim in the shooting.

The spokesperson said the hospital’s emergency room was placed under “enhanced security” early Sunday morning but that the security measures have since been lifted. She could not confirm if the increased security was related to the shooting.

Koval noted that the number of shots-fired incidents in Madison in 2017 is pacing ahead of the number of incidents at the same time last year.

The victims are being treated as victims and not suspects as of Sunday afternoon, Koval said. Police believe at least one or two suspects are at large.

Koval said he’s confident an arrest will be made after reviewing surveillance video and forensic evidence, but stressed that information can only take them so far.

“To the moms of these young men, to the girlfriends and the mothers of their children who are all young, I will be going to an awful lot of visitations over the course of the year unless we can do something definitively to churn this momentum in a different direction,” he said.

Some family members of the victims held a press conference Sunday to stress this was not gang related.

“This wasn’t gang related it wasn’t tied to any of the other shootings going on in the community. Both of them are good fathers and brothers,” Deon Johnson, one of the victim’s brother’s, said.

Family members said the group of men involved grew up together and something led them to fight, but it wasn’t related to drugs.

The family also said the victims and families will cooperate fully with police.

Local leaders at the press conference said this incident is another example of why Madison needs stay committed to the 15-Point Violence Prevention Plan which was approved by the city last year.

Anyone with information is asked to call Madison Area Crime Stoppers at 608-266-6014.