Xterra sought after shots in neighborhood near Duke
Posted October 9, 2013
Durham, N.C. — Durham police are looking for a yellow Nissan Xterra which witnesses said traveled through a neighborhood near Duke University's East Campus Wednesday morning, with someone inside firing shots that damaged several parked vehicles and a house.
Residents in the historic Trinity Park neighborhood reported seeing the SUV driving slowly down Lamond Avenue and Watts Street around 7 a.m. and said it appeared someone inside the vehicle was randomly firing shots.
No one was injured, but a bullet pierced through the exterior wall of a house where Duke student Alex Buben and his housemates live and lodged itself in the interior wall.
"At this point, we are just really lucky that no one was hit," Buben said.
The windows of his SUV – one of five vehicles hit – were also shattered.
Two windows of Geoffrey Mock's car were also hit.
Mock said he was standing in his front doorway when he saw the Xterra traveling down his street and noticed a red dot from a laser sight on his car.
"I figured I probably should just get out of the way," Mock said. "When I did that, I heard the gunshots."
He looked back outside, he said, and saw that two of his car windows had been shattered.
"It's a pretty quiet and peaceful neighborhood," Mock said. "It's just entirely random, and I can't imagine why they would do that."
Some neighbors said that, although they were shaken by the gunshots, they believe it is an isolated incident.
"It's a little unsetting," Buben said. "I didn't think something like this could happen in this neighborhood, but it's just proof that we need to be a little more careful."
Still, that's not comforting for Barbara Williams, who owns BW&A book-making business on Lamond Avenue. She said employees usually arrive for work around 8 a.m.
"The thought that someone would be in the parking lot and hit by a bullet – it's just mind-blowing," Williams said.
Police are investigating a motive for the shootings and asking anyone with any information about the crime to call Crime Stoppers at 919-683-1200. Crime Stoppers pays cash rewards for information leading to arrests in felony cases, and callers never have to identify themselves.