Tulsa Police Arrest Three Teens In Connection With Gang-Related Shooting

Monday, January 17th 2011, 2:31 pm
By: News On 6

Lacie Lowry, News On 6

TULSA, Oklahoma -- The Tulsa Gang Unit arrested three teens Monday night in connection with a gang-related shooting.

The shooting happened Monday afternoon near 2nd and Xanthus.

It was the latest in a string of gang violence between two rivals and left one man in the hospital.

Gang unit officers arrested two members of the Latin Kings gang and one member of the Florencia gang. 

Abad Cuevas, 19, Alex Perez, 17, and Juan Davila, 16, were arrested on charges of shooting with intent to kill, using a vehicle to discharge a gun and malicious mischief.  Cuevas is also charged with conspiracy to commit felony murder, and possession of marijauna with intent.

Neighbors aren't surprised that police say several shootings over the last few days are all gang-related.

"Generally drive-bys, generally they're shooting at the cars or the front of the house," said Chris Whitney. "They may or not have been targeting people before now but apparently today there was a pretty big escalation."

Leslie Johnson and Chris and Mary Whitney live near 2nd and Xanthus, where the most serious of those shootings happened Monday afternoon.

"We've had a stray bullet through our front door, so I'm really nervous about that," Johnson said.

Witnesses told police a vehicle drove into the intersection, a man got out, pointed a handgun at the victim, fired a couple of shots, then drove away. Police recovered six casings, possibly from a .22.

"This has not been an uncommon place for us to have some shootings. This particular home has been shot on a couple of other occasions," said Tulsa Police Sergeant Bill Goree.

Tulsa's Gang Unit says the shooting was retaliation believed to be between members of the South Land Wicked gang and the Latin Kings, who have teamed up with the Juaritos and the Florencia gang.

"A vehicle matching the same description of a light-colored SUV was involved in a shooting last night also about 11 o'clock just a few blocks from here," Sergeant Goree said.

Gang officers say two members of the Latin Kings and one Florencia sprayed gang graffiti all over this gas station and car wash near East 21st and 109th East Avenue.  They wrote over South Land Wicked's graffiti, a sign of disrespect.

Police later chased down an SUV and found several cans of spray paint in the car.  The three teens inside were arrested and officers say they tracked them back to Monday's Xanthus shooting as well.

Johnson and the Whitneys want city leaders to help stop the violence.

"As homeowners, we should feel safe in our homes, it doesn't matter where we are in Tulsa" Johnson said.

They believe it's detrimental to the neighborhood and every other tax payer.

"We have to call the police here again and again and again. Those are tax dollars," Mary Whitney said.

The victim in Monday's shooting was shot once in the chest and is expected to survive.