Dixwell shooting leads to Elm Street closure

Gordon Pettaway, who was shot on the shoulder in Dixwell, was found alive in his car on Elm Street and taken to St. Raphael’s hospital. Sunday saw three other shootings, one fatal, in the Elm City.
Gordon Pettaway, who was shot on the shoulder in Dixwell, was found alive in his car on Elm Street and taken to St. Raphael’s hospital. Sunday saw three other shootings, one fatal, in the Elm City. Photo by Victor Kang.

Elm Street Sunday evening as more than 10 police cars and an ambulance closed the block between York and High streets for an hour to retrieve a shooting victim.

Onlookers said police officers had their guns drawn as they approached a dark-colored BMW vehicle driven by 21-year-old Gordon Pettaway, who had been shot in the left shoulder in Dixwell. He was found alive and taken to St. Raphael’s Hospital, according to New Haven Police Department spokesman David Hartman, who added Pettaway’s wound did not appear to be life-threatening.

Yale Police Department Assistant Chief Michael Patten said the incident never posed any danger to any member of the Yale community.

Hartman said his department responded to reports of a shooting at 90 Shelton Ave. at 5:26 p.m. Soon after, he said, the NHPD’s dispatcher released a description of Pettaway’s dark-colored BMW vehicle with a smashed front-left window. A YPD officer spotted the vehicle driving erratically on Broadway, Patten said, and stopped it on Elm Street. There, Pettaway told the officer he had been shot, Patten said.

Pettaway’s vehicle collided with a Nissan Maxima on Elm Street and subsequently stopped, according to one woman in the impacted vehicle who declined to give her name because she was involved in the police investigation. This account was disputed by YPD Sergeant Keith Pullen, and Hartman said he had no information about whether Pettaway’s vehicle hit any others.

Although an officer on the scene said he expected the block to remain closed for a “couple hours,” the street was cleared and traffic resumed at around 6:30 p.m.

Last Monday night, another man, Marquette Pettaway, was shot in the buttocks in a parking lot on Valley Street, according to an NHPD press release last week. The New Haven Independent reported that police at the Elm Street scene “noticed the connection” between the names, though Lieutenant Joe Witkowski said at this point no one knows if the victims or the shootings are related.

Three other shootings, one of which was fatal, made Sunday afternoon a violent one. A man was found shot dead at 7:20 p.m. at the back of a home at 536 Whalley Ave. between the Beaver Hills and Edgewood neighborhoods. Hartman confirmed it was a homicide, bringing the Elm City’s murder count for 2011 to 30 — the highest since 1994, when 32 murders were recorded, and already six higher than last year’s total count.

A 17-year-old male with a gunshot wound to the left leg was admitted to Yale-New Haven Hospital at 3:09 p.m., claiming to have been shot in the area of Shelton Avenue and Read Street in Newhallville, according to Hartman.

Another man was reported to have entered St. Raphael’s at 6:19 p.m., Hartman said, adding the victim has not yet been identified and a report of the circumstances of his shooting is not yet available.

The NHPD has launched investigations into all four cases and Hartman said Sunday evening that there was “nothing at the moment” to suggest the shootings are related.

Comments

  • cdecoro

    Worst murder rate in 16 years (and probably even worse by the time the year is over) and what do we do? Why, re-elect our beloved mayor for a 10th term! He’s done such a great job, after all! Maybe we can rise to the top of the murder rankings if we only give him a couple terms more!