Update: Pittsfield shooting victim in intensive care; suspect in custody
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PITTSFIELD - One teenager is in intensive care and another is in custody following a shooting Monday near the intersection of Tyler and First streets, according to Pittsfield Police.
A 15-year-old male, the alleged shooter, is in custody, said police.
On Monday night, Lt. Michael Grady said police are looking for another juvenile, considered a witness to the shooting, but who is not a suspect. The identities of these three parties have not been released because of their ages.
At 8:54 a.m., police responded to the scene where they received numerous reports of gunshots being fired and a person being hit near the O'Connell's Convenience Plus store and Shell gas station at 90 Tyler St.
"We heard a 'pop' and then looked out and saw a kid running away," said Tom Reilly, who was working with other employees at Quillard Brothers Garage on Tyler Street when the shooting occurred.
Witnesses say a nearby County Ambulance vehicle was flagged down and transported the 17-year-old male victim to Berkshire Medical Center prior to police officers' arrival.
The victim underwent surgery for a single gunshot wound to the torso and was still recovering in the ICU late Monday night, according to police. It was not clear the severity of his injuries.
Assisted by members of the Berkshire County Sheriff's Office and the Massachusetts State Police, Pittsfield Police quickly put up yellow crime scene tape around the perimeter of the gas station and convenience store, from Tyler Street down to the corner of First and Burbank streets, and along a portion of Burbank Street.
As a precaution, nearby schools were placed in lockdown for part of the morning, Lt. Jeffrey Bradford said. Classes aren't in session, but summer programs at places like Morningside Community School were in progress.
The Tyler Street store and gas pumps remained closed to patrons until about 10:30 a.m., when the tape was taken down. After that, it was business as usual.
Police also were called to BMC's emergency department, where a number of people had gathered.
During the first hour after the shooting, police collected evidence and were initially looking for two suspects witnesses said they saw fleeing on foot. Though most streets remained open to traffic, a heavy police presence could be seen patrolling area roads, with officers searching sidewalks and yards with dogs from the K-9 Unit.
Police said the 15-year-old male was arrested in connection to the shooting within 50 minutes. He is charged with assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and discharging a firearm within 500 feet of a dwelling.
Several witnesses reported seeing one of the suspects running down Myrtle Street to 12 Stoddard Ave., where he was seen banging on the front door of the residence.
Yellow crime scene tape was tied across the front of the home and stair landing, where officers remained on guard there for most of the afternoon. At around 2:45, a warrant was served. Police said they entered the home and subsequently recovered a handgun.
Reilly, who said he's worked at the nearby garage for some 30 years, said this was the first time he could recall a daytime shooting happening there.
"It's kind of scary," he said.
Reilly and others said police regularly patrol the neighborhood, noting that there have been robberies over the years at the O'Connell's Convenience Plus store.
An extensive investigation of this incident and the motive is still underway, with Detective Kim Bertelli serving as the lead investigator.
Pittsfield Police Chief Michael Wynn issued a statement thanking the various law enforcement and medical agencies involved in investigating this incident, and particularly thanked the citizens of the neighborhood for cooperating with and assisting investigators.
Anyone who witnessed the shooting or has any information related to the incident is asked to call the Pittsfield Police Detective Bureau at (413) 448-9705.
Eagle reporter Dick Lindsay also contributed to this story.
To reach Jenn Smith: firstname.lastname@example.org, or (413) 496-6239. On Twitter: @JennSmith_Ink
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