Little Rock Police: 2 Dead, 5 Wounded in Late-Night Shooting

Little Rock Police: 2 Dead, 5 Wounded in Late-Night Shooting
Little Rock Police Department Chief Heath Helton addresses members of the media during a press conference at the LRPD headquarters about multiple overnight shootings, in Little Rock, Ark, on March 27, 2023. (Colin Murphey/Arkansas Democrat-Gazette via AP)

LITTLE ROCK, Ark.—Police in Little Rock, Arkansas say gunfire erupted as a crowd of people gathered along a commercial boulevard southwest of downtown known for “caravanning,” or large processions of drivers cruising on city streets. Two people died and five were wounded as law enforcement sought clues for who may have opened fire, the police chief said Monday.

Police Chief Heath Helton told reporters that officers responded to the shooting around 9:25 p.m. Sunday on Asher Avenue. Malachi Carey, 20, died at the scene, and Jailene Washington, also 20, died at a local hospital, Helton said. One of those wounded was in serious condition at a hospital Monday afternoon, he said.

Helton said a large number of cars had gathered at the location where the shootings occurred. Police interviewed witnesses from the city and from outside of Little Rock and determined some sort of argument led to the gunfire, Helton said. It wasn’t known how many suspects police were trying to find.

Helton said police patrolling the area of tire sales and repair shops and other commercial establishments—as well as the city at large—have been dealing with so-called “caravanning” and that it may have played a factor in Sunday’s shooting.

“We saw a large number of people influx into the city which is not uncommon with the caravanning and things we have witnessed over the years,” the chief said.

The city passed ordinances last year banning caravanning and street racing.

Sunday’s shooting did not appear to be related to an earlier incident nearby in which a woman said she may have been grazed by a bullet when someone shot at her car, Helton said.

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