St. Paul saw its first homicide of 2020 just two hours into the new year, the city’s police department announced Wednesday morning.
According to a statement from the St. Paul Police Department, officers were dispatched to a bar on the 900 block of University Avenue after callers reported shots being fired around 2 a.m. Wednesday, January 1.
Officers found a “gravely injured adult male sitting in the driver’s seat of a vehicle” when they arrived at the scene. Medics with the St. Paul Fire Department were called to the scene, but there was “nothing they could do to help the victim,” who was pronounced dead without being transported to a hospital.
As of Wednesday morning, nobody had been arrested and no suspect information was available, the police department said in its statement. The department’s Forensic Services Unit is processing the scene for evidence and investigators with the Homicide Unit are interviewing witnesses to determine what led to the shooting, the statement added.
The St. Paul Police Department said it will continue to release information about the case on its Twitter page as more details become available.
We are investigating a shooting death that occurred just after 2 a.m. this morning on the 900 block of University Avenue West.
SPPD PIOs will release more information about the case later this morning. Watch @sppdmn for updates.
— Saint Paul Police Department (@sppdmn) January 1, 2020
A December 26 shooting marked St. Paul’s 30th homicide of 2019—just four shy of 1992’s all-time record of 34 homicides. St. Paul Police Chief Todd Axtell said in a November interview that the 24 gun-related homicides was “the most in the history of this department.”
Axtell said his detectives in the homicide and special investigations units were “absolutely exhausted” and revealed that he had reached out to the FBI for help in tackling the record homicide rates.
A November report alleged that Mayor Melvin Carter abandoned an effort to partner with the National Network for Safe Communities to help reduce gun violence in his city, but Axtell declined to address the topic.
Meanwhile, Minneapolis police officers are investigating a stabbing that occurred near Broadway and N. Fremont Avenue around 5 a.m. Wednesday morning. Officers found two stabbing victims in a car, one of whom died at the scene while the other was transported to a nearby hospital.
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