UPDATE: Three dead, three hurt in west Louisville shootings - WDRB 41 Louisville News

UPDATE: Three dead, three hurt in west Louisville shootings

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LOUISVILLE, KY. (WDRB) -- Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer and Steve Conrad, chief of Louisville Metro Police, are addressing the public to discuss a series of shootings that left three dead and three more injured Thursday afternoon.

The violence has brought added police to the area where the shootings took place.

Mayor Fischer and police chief Steve Conrad said Thursday night that extra police and sheriff's officers will patrol the west end neighborhoods not just for the night, but for the weeks ahead.

They also said it was brazen and highly unusual for anyone to kill someone else in the presence of police, as happened in the second shooting.

And, finally, officers do recognize the possibility retaliation could occur.  However, "All of the individuals involved in today's cowardly acts are either deceased or now in police custody," Mayor Fischer said.

Fischer and Conrad urged people not to jump to conclusions amidst speculation the Thursday shootings might be linked to other, recent violence.

"The motivations for today's shootings are under investigation. Any connection to prior activities are part of our investigation, and I would caution against any leaps to conclusions until we've had an opportunity to complete a thorough and complete investigation," Conrad said.

Chief Conrad said the officer who fired shots "had no other choice" but to use force against the woman who pointed her gun at him.

Police have not released the officer's name.

He's on paid leave, which is standard procedure in such shootings.

The mayor and police chief will meet with community activists and ministers Friday morning to talk about ways to curb violence going into the summer.

"What I seen is just not responsible living."

That was the reaction from Maetta Brodus, a witness to one of two shootings.

The first shooting happened at 32nd and Kentucky. Both Craig Blande, Jr. and Tyson Mimms died of gunshot wounds. Another victim was rushed to University Hospital and is critical condition, and the other, who was shot in the leg, drove to 26th and Elliott before stopping.  That person went to the hospital with injuries that did not appear life-threatening.

Neighbors say they heard several gunshots.  A large crowd gathered at the scene as police blocked off an area extending two or three houses away from the corner.

Then more shots were fired even as that investigation was underway.  WDRB's Stephan Johnson reported from the scene that two women got into an argument at 32nd and Greenwood, and one pulled a gun and shot and killed the other. Makeba Lee died of gunshot wounds. LMPD officers then shot the shooter.  The injured girl was rushed to the hospital.  There's no word on her condition. 

Two of the victims in Thursday's shootings have a child together, relatives told Johnson and WDRB's Chris Turner. 

Jefferson County Public Schools says five elementary schools implemented heightened security due to the shootings.  Those were Engelhard, Byck, Brandeis, Maupin, and Carter elementaries.  JCPS says the schools were not on lockdown, and the higher security level was purely a precaution. 

Those schools dismissed at the usual time, but students living in the area of 24th, 25th, and 26th, and 32nd and Elliot were taken to Central High School.  JCPS said about 100 students were expected to be affected.  Early childhood students living in those areas were also taken to Central.

University of Louisville Hospital put into place heightened security following the shooting.  There were reports of emotions running high among some people, with lots of yelling.  Extra officers have been assigned there, with about ten or so marked and unmarked police cars there.  One person who was leaving the hospital tells WDRB News that more doors than usual were locked. 

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