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Published: Tuesday, 6/24/2014

4 people shot in Toledo in weekend violence


Four people were shot in Toledo over the weekend, police said.

At 10 p.m. Sunday police were dispatched to the 100 bock of West Bancroft Street where Justin Quinn, 24, was found with at least two gunshot wounds. Steven Smith, 25, was found on Franklin Avenue, near Prescott Street, with at least one gunshot wound, police said.

The victims apparently fled to their respective locations after being shot at 15 W. Bancroft St., just outside of Toledo fire Station 7.

Both victims were taken to Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center for treatment; a hospital spokesman on Monday said no patients with those names were at the facility.

At 2:17 a.m. Sunday, LaJuan Pearson, 37, was shot outside JT’s Bar and Grill, 3325 Stickney Ave., during what he described to police as an attempted robbery.

The victim told police two men approached him in the parking lot outside the bar and demanded, “Run your pockets,” which implies a robbery. The victim said he continued walking toward the front door when he was shot multiple times.

He was taken to Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center, by private vehicle, for nonlife threatening injuries. A spokesman on Monday said no one by that name was at the facility.

Since April 27, four people have been shot outside JT’s Bar and Grill, which has, for years, been a problem spot for police. It was not known if action was or would be taken against the North Toledo watering hole.

Just before 1 a.m. Saturday, Steven Abernathy was shot once in his left leg while holding his 1-year-old daughter.

Mr. Abernathy, 34, had just parked his truck in his driveway with his girlfriend and child in the 300 block of East Manhattan Boulevard, and was taking his daughter out of the truck, when a man with a gun crept out from the shadows.

Still holding his daughter, Mr. Abernathy backed into the street. When the motion-sensor lights clicked on, Erin Wright saw the man approaching her boyfriend, heard the gun fire once, and saw her daughter fall into the street.

“That’s what I can’t just get past,” Ms. Wright said. “He has a baby. How can you just shoot?”

The gunman then went to Ms. Wright, who was still sitting inside the truck, and pointed the gun at her, trying to open the vehicle door. The two struggled. The shooter fled when a car stopped to help Mr. Abernathy, who was still in the street.

The toddler was not seriously injured, but “has not been acting like herself,” Ms. Wright said. Mr. Abernathy remained hospitalized on Monday. The bullet broke his femur.

“I’m just glad we’re all safe and alive,” Ms. Wright said.

Police ask that anyone with information about any of the weekend shootings call the Crime Stopper program at 419-255-1111. Callers may remain anonymous and could be eligible for a reward.

Contact Taylor Dungjen at tdungjen@theblade.com, or 419-724-6054, or on Twitter @taylordungjen.

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