Police also broke up a brawl at the Foggy Bottom Metro station. Then, in the wee hours of Tuesday morning, a 44-year-old man heard gunshots in the 4200 block of Barnaby Road SE. He started to run and was hit in the leg.
In one night, six people were shot in varied sections of the District. Police said there was no pattern to the violence. The victims were shot in Petworth and Trinidad, two up-and-coming neighborhoods; in Georgetown, one of the city’s wealthiest sections; and in Washington Highlands in Southeast, one of the poorest.
“In the 21 years that I’ve been [in the District], October is always one of our more challenging months,” Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier said.
But, she said, Monday night’s shootings were not part of a trend. Violent crime is down this year compared with last year, Lanier said: Homicides, at 95, are down from 110 at this time last year, and there have been 418 assaults with a dangerous weapon this year, compared with 510 in 2010.
Officers had announced one arrest in the latest shootings: a 24-year-old man they chased down near the scene of the Georgetown shooting. He was charged with carrying a pistol without a license. Officers would not say whether he was involved in the shooting. The victim, who was apparently shot in the head, was in critical condition.
As she often does on nights when lots of people plan to be out, Lanier had ordered extra officers on the streets. Monday night started out relatively quiet, she said, with smaller-than-expected crowds at some traditionally popular Halloween gathering places — U Street NW, Adams Morgan, Chinatown and Georgetown.
Then, as trick-or-treaters headed home, police dispatchers started what would be a busy night. The first call was to Florida Avenue near Benning Road NE, where the victim told officers to seek a masked gunman in an SUV, possibly a Cherokee. Investigators were considering other explanations based on witness accounts, police sources said.
At 9:04 p.m., officers had another mystery. Two teens, 16 and 19, were hanging out at Georgia Avenue and Decatur Street NW when they heard gunshots and started running. Both were hit in the leg.
At 10:08 p.m., just blocks from the Decatur Street shooting, an 18-year-old woman was walking down the 800 block of Crittenden Street NW when she heard the crackle of gunfire and took off running. She was hit in the ankle, police said.
Because of the proximity of those two shootings, police were trying to determine whether they were related. D.C. Council member Muriel Bowser (D-Ward 4) said the Crittenden Street victim had been at the scene of the Georgia Avenue shooting.