The gunfire that claimed the life of a 1-year-old girl and seriously wounded her 2-year-old sister last week was likely the result of a long-time gang feud, police sources said Wednesday.
"This is blue versus red," said one source who is not authorized to comment about the ongoing investigation.
Officials believe the shooting is the result of a fight that spans more than a decade between the Manor Boys, a "Blood" gang -- the red -- and the Cherrywood Boys, who boast an affiliation to the "Crips" -- the blue.
Three men arrested late Tuesday for allegedly lying to Toledo police during their investigation of the shootings last Thursday of Keondra Hooks, 1, and Leondra Hooks, 2, at the Moody Manor apartment complex claim -- either on Facebook or with tattoos -- to be Manor Boys.
Bond was set at $500,000 each for Keshawn Jennings, 20, of 244 Wasaon St.; James Moore, 20, of 2037 W. Terrace View St., and Antwaine Jones, 18, of 3145 Cottage Ave., during their arraignments this week in Toledo Municipal Court. All remained in the Lucas County jail later Wednesday and are each charged with one count of obstructing official business. They were being held in the Lucas County jail.
The Manor Boys claim Moody Manor, a Kent Street apartment complex, as their territory. Residents and police have said many gang members do not actually live at the complex, but grew up there and still consider it to be "their 'hood."
The Cherrywood Boys consider the Greenbelt Place apartments, on Cherry Street, to be their home base.
Toledo police Sgt. Joe Heffernan said there was no incident in particular that sparked a feud between these two gangs, but close proximity is a contributing factor.
"Geographically, they're very close to each other," Sergeant Heffernan said. "That's basically it. A lot of it [the fight] has to do with that.
"Violence begets violence, and that has kept it going," he said.
Moody Manor is about a mile from Greenbelt Place.
Mr. Jones was also arraigned in Toledo Municipal Court on an unrelated criminal trespassing charge; court documents state Mr. Jones was told six times in June to stay off Moody Manor property but, on Aug. 9, returned and was arrested.
For the obstruction charge, a third-degree felony, a $500,000 bond is quite high.
In comparison, two men arrested in June during unrelated incidents, and at separate times, were given much lower bond on charges of obstructing official business for also allegedly hindering a homicide investigation.
Xavier Tate, 28, of 161 Austin St. was given a $50,000 bond and Rockne Adams, 30, of 1520 Elm St. was released on his own recognizance.
Officials said the high bond for the men accused of obstructing the Keondra Hooks homicide investigation could be because of their criminal histories; another source indicated that additional charges could be filed.
Police do not believe Mr. Moore's alleged involvement has anything to do with the March death of his half-brother, Montrese Moore, 19, who was killed in a gang-related shootout at a Cherry Street gas station.
A member of the South Toledo Gangster Disciples, Kevin Jamalvenson James, is charged with murder and three counts of felonious assault in that case. His trial is set to begin on Aug. 28 in Lucas County Common Pleas Court.
Bernice Neal, aunt to Keondra, 1, and Leondra, 2, said her family knows two of the three suspects -- Mr. Moore and Mr. Jones.
Ms. Neal said her sister once dated one of the men's brothers and that, when her grandmother lived on Streicher Street in North Toledo, the men visited the house.
"They used to come to my grandmother's house when we stayed on Streicher," she said.
Ms. Neal said she doesn't believe her family was the intended target of the shooting, but wonders if the shooters thought someone else was in the apartment.
"That's what we're trying to figure out: Who [were they] shooting at and why?" Ms. Neal said.
Mr. Jennings and Mr. Moore, meanwhile, both were shot on June 20 outside Remy's Gentleman's Club in North Toledo during a gang-related incident.
In November, 2010, Mr. Moore was arrested for aggravated menacing after he allegedly threatened to shoot up a North Toledo bar after an argument with security, according to court documents.
Mr. Moore was found guilty of a lesser charge of menacing.
The next month, Mr. Moore was charged with carrying a concealed weapon for reportedly having a gun hidden in his pants while he was hanging out near Moody Manor. The charge was dismissed at the prosecutor's request, according to court records.
Ms. Neal declined to comment about the gang feud as it relates to a possible motive, but said Toledo gangs "ain't really gangs because they ain't loyal to each other," she said. "They will shoot each other and they feel the reason is good enough if they fight and say, 'That's my boy,' or 'That's my hood,' or whatever."
Keondra, who was shot once in the head, is scheduled to be buried today after a 6 p.m. memorial at Tate Funeral Services, 3302 Lagrange St.
Contact Taylor Dungjen at: email@example.com, 419-724-6054, or on Twitter @tdungjen_Blade.