Mayor, chief say help needed to solve York City shootings
Interim York City Police Chief Troy Bankert had little new information to release about a recent spate of shootings when he spoke to the media at a news conference about the two most recent shootings.
"We know some information," he said. "We have confirmed even less."
At a news conference on Wednesday, April 25, Bankert and York City Mayor Michael Helfrich urged people to come forward with information that will help detectives arrest the shooters. Both said that can be done anonymously.
Bankert declined to say whether any recent nonfatal shootings and homicides are connected.
He also declined to say whether the shootings are retaliatory and whether they are the work of neighborhood gangs.
Basic details released about two shootings on Tuesday remain sparse, including how many people were shooting at each scene, whether anyone fired back and why the shootings happened in the first place.
The chief said he can't release information that hasn't been confirmed.
Teen gunned down: Eighteen-year-old Nylik Roger Moore was fatally shot just after 5 p.m. Tuesday in the 100 block of East Maple Street.
Bankert said Shanquay Ritter, 21, of York City, is being sought for questioning.
"We do not have any type of probable cause at this point (that would suggest Ritter be arrested)," he said. "I can't compel him to come in."
Moore was shot in the back and the leg, according to York County Coroner Pam Gay, who said the bullet that entered his back lodged in his chest. Gay has ruled Moore's death a homicide.
Wounded in that shooting was Jashan Wilson, 20, of York City, who was taken to York Hospital in a private vehicle, according to police.
Wilson was shot in the arm and was in stable condition, police said.
Bankert has said Moore was targeted by his killer or killers.
Earlier shooting: On Tuesday morning, 43-year-old Walter Jenkins of York City was shot in the head near the corner of Park Street and Park Place, according to the chief.
Jenkins also was targeted, the chief said.
On Wednesday, Bankert said Jenkins' condition at York Hospital has been upgraded to stable.
The chief was able to confirm that an incident Tuesday evening at York Hospital was connected with an earlier shooting.
"A lot of folks that were up at the hospital during that (incident) were somehow connected to one or both victims," he said. "We're not exactly sure."
Hospital incident: Dan Carrigan, spokesman for WellSpan and York Hospital, said the emergency department was placed on lockdown Tuesday evening, which he said is a standard safety measure when a gunshot victim is brought in.
"Following the lockdown, several individuals attempted to gain access to the emergency department and became disruptive," Carrigan said.
York City Police and hospital security staff were summoned to calm the situation, according to Carrigan.
"The safety of patients, visitors and staff is WellSpan's top priority," he said, adding no injuries were reported.
A family member of Moore's posted two videos of police either arresting Moore's family members or removing them from hospital property.
Bankert concluded the news conference before follow-up questions could be asked about the hospital incident, and a message left with Lt. Gene Fells was not returned Wednesday.
Distraught people can be heard crying in both videos.
Stopping violence: Helfrich begged people with information to come forward, "so we can put a stop to this."
"I consider York City my family, so ... I'm feeling the loss," he said.
The mayor said he went to the scenes of both Tuesday shootings and talked with neighbors, "just (to) listen to them and try to comfort them."
He said he spoke to people of all ages, including former gang members.
"None of them want this violence," Helfrich said.
The mayor said he hopes a number of resources expected to be rolled out in the next six months will help young people "get on a better track."
Those not interested in being good citizens will face a team that includes York City Police, probation officers, the U.S. Attorney's Office, the U.S. Marshals Service, the York County District Attorney's Office, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and other law-enforcement partners, Helfrich said.
A warning: "You have been warned ... the team is coming for you," he said. "Violence has no place in our town and we're not going to stand for it."
Bankert estimated between 40 and 50 law-enforcement officers were involved in investigating Tuesday's shootings.
"It completely exhausts us," he said. "The 911 calls don't stop just because someone got shot."
Part of the efforts Tuesday included officers and others conducting GVI details, the chief said.
The core of the Group Violence Intervention initiative's mission is to reduce gun violence by instead offering support and social services to those affiliated with neighborhood groups or gangs. Those who continue to commit gun violence get special attention from police and their local, state and federal partners.
2nd shooting connection: This is the second time that York City Police have issued a news release stating they're searching for Ritter to question him about a fatal shooting.
Last summer, police said they wanted to talk to Ritter about the Aug. 21, 2017, homicide of Jamere Cherry, 28, outside Cherry's home in the 200 block of East Gas Avenue.
Police have so far not arrested anyone for Cherry's death.
Other recent shootings: On Sunday, April 22, Kenderrick Rashe Carter, 26, of York City, was shot in the leg and critically wounded, police said, adding he also was targeted.
Luis Inoa, 27, of Shenandoah, Schuylkill County, was fatally shot Sunday, April 15, in the area of South Duke and South streets, York City Police have said. He suffered a gunshot wound to the torso, according to the coroner's office.
Inoa also was targeted by his killer or killers, police have said.
Craig Slanker, 51, of Manchester Township, was shot in the leg on Thursday, April 12, during an argument over a drug sale in the 700 block of Pennsylvania Avenue, police said.
Anthony Brackbill, 33, of Dover, was shot three times on Friday, April 13, while in the 500 block of East South Street, according to police, who said he and the apparent shooter "purposely met each other and were engaged in illegal activity."
Anyone with information about of these shootings is urged to call police at 717-846-1234, or anonymously text "Yorktips" and your information to 847-411. Or submit tips through the York City PD app.
Helfrich said people who don't feel comfortable reaching out to police can contact the mayor's office. Reach Helfrich's office at 717-849-2221, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
"We're here too," he said.
— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at email@example.com or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.