Mass shooting on West Martin Luther King Drive

Greenwood emergency personnel wheel a shooting victim on a stretcher toward a waiting ambulance Saturday night. Authorities say 10 people were shot, including a brother and sister who died from their wounds.

A brother and sister visiting Greenwood from Chicago died Saturday night from gunshot wounds following a mass shooting incident that occurred on West Martin Luther King Drive. 

The victims were Jonathan Pitts, 42, and Katrina Pitts, 41, Leflore County Coroner Debra Sanders said.

Jonathan Pitts died at the scene, Sanders said, though he was not officially pronounced dead until his body was transported to Greenwood Leflore Hospital. His sister was also taken by ambulance to the hospital, where she later died.

The siblings, along with other relatives from Chicago, were in Greenwood to attend their grandmother’s funeral, Sanders said. A gathering featuring family from Greenwood and Chicago was held following the services. 

According to Deputy Police Chief Marvin Hammond, authorities began to receive numerous phone calls beginning at 10:53 p.m. in reference to shots fired in the 400 block of West Martin Luther King Drive. 

Arriving at the scene, officers found a group of 10 people who were shot. Those injured, including the Pittses, consisted of people from Chicago and Greenwood, Hammond said. 

He was unable to provide an age range of the other victims or their conditions. 

Eyewitnesses told police that a firearm used in the mass shooting was an assault-style rifle.

 “They said it was an AR-15,” Hammond said. Officers picked up several shell casings of an AR-15 semiautomatic rifle -- Hammond could not say how many -- at the scene.

He said it was uncertain whether other firearms were used.

As of early Sunday afternoon, no arrests have been made in the case. Hammond said the alleged assailant who was armed with the semiautomatic rifle was gone by the time officers arrived on the scene. He said more information on the shooting would be available Monday. 

The two deaths bring to 22 the number of homicides that have occurred in Greenwood or other parts of Leflore County this year. All but one of the homicides have been firearm-related. With still more than two months to go in the year, the deadly pace is already twice last year’s total of 11 homicides. 

Anyone with information on the shooting may call CrimeStoppers, an anonymous tip line, at 1-800-222-8477.

Contact Gerard Edic at 581-7239 or gedic@gwcommonwealth.com.

(1) comment

guest3224

This is just sad my this is my neighbors family she resides in Memphis now she left to go to funeral for her grandma an have to run for her life I’m praying for the entire family an I pray God bring this suspect to light asap so justice can be served for my friend an neighbors family

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