One dead, another injured in Sunday morning shooting

Keith W. Bates
Keith W. Bates

By: Laura Geller - bio | email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - One man is dead, another in the hospital after a deadly shooting in Richmond's Church Hill.

This all unfolded shortly after midnight in the 700 block of North 35th Street.

We're told the problems started with a domestic disturbance at a nearby neighborhood cookout.

Friends say they heard a couple arguing.

When things moved closer to 47-year-old Keith Bates's home on everything seemed to escalate.

Almost every resident we spoke with was too afraid to appear on camera, but they say the sights and sounds of Saturday night, chill them to the bone.

Around 10-30 witnesses report hearing an argument on the street.

Voices screaming and cursing, even gunshots.

Then, they say, things seemed to quiet down.

About two hours later chaos once again erupted -- this time two men were shot.

A flower now marks the spot where Bates's body fell.

Neighbors tell me he was trying to quiet down a fight when he was shot twice, once in the leg, once in the chest.

The other victim, who hasn't been identified yet, was taken to VCU Medical Center.

According to the residents who say they live in fear, the issues stem from drug activity at three houses on this particular block.

Over the past several years, they allege, heroine, coke and marijuana sales and use have invaded the area.

Eddie Lee Bowmer moved to the next block down a few months ago.

"It's in that block," said Bowmer. "It's uncanny that we're this close and it doesn't happen up here."

Bowmer says he sees cop cars patrolling the area, but after one man lost his life reportedly trying to stop the violence, he thinks more should be done.

"It's very sad to me," he said. "It's human life. It seems like a lot of people just don't have a respect for human life."

Tonight the suspect is still out there.

Police have not released any information on who it is they're looking for.

Anyone with information is urged to call Crime Stoppers at 780-1000.

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