ST. LOUIS (AP) — Five teenagers were shot in a 24-hour period in St. Louis County, one of them fatally, in what is shaping up to be another violent year involving young victims in the region.
A 16-year-old from Iowa was killed in a shooting Tuesday night and a 14-year-old girl was shot in the hand and hospitalized in a separate shooting early Wednesday, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.
The latest violence came after two children's hospitals in St. Louis reported earlier this week that they had been seeing a concerning number of juvenile shooting victims.
"If you average out our total numbers for May, we're right now seeing a patient being shot every other day," Dr. Lindsay Clukies, associate medical director for trauma services at St. Louis Children's Hospital, said Monday.
The region drew widespread attention last year when more than a dozen children were killed in shootings. St. Louis County police spokesman Benjamin Granda said he hopes the recent spate of shootings "is not a preview of what we're going to see for the remainder of the spring and summer."
The 14-year-old girl was with two other juveniles who stole a car, police spokeswoman Tracy Panus said. They became involved in an altercation with occupants of a pickup truck who shot at the car, which then struck a parked vehicle. The pickup drove away. The girl was taken to the hospital and the others in the stolen car were taken into custody.
On Tuesday night, 16-year-old William Adams of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, was found in a yard and pronounced dead at the scene. A 17-year-old male also at the scene was shot in the hip and hospitalized.
Two other male teenagers were injured in separate Tuesday afternoon shootings: A 17-year-old was wounded in an exchange of gunfire between vehicles and a 15-year-old was struck in a drive-by shooting. Neither of their wounds were considered life-threatening.