Local News

Children wounded in Durham shooting head home

Posted October 24, 2011 4:50 p.m. EDT
Updated October 24, 2011 11:09 p.m. EDT

— Two children wounded Sunday in a Durham shooting were released Monday afternoon from Duke University Hospital, and authorities offered a reward for information leading to an arrest in the case.

Au-Nestii Hagans, 1, was shot in the arm, and Anaryiion Hagans, 3, was shot in the hand when someone opened fire Sunday afternoon on North Driver Street. The two children were inside a home at 204-A N. Driver St. at the time.

"I'm blessed for them to be here because it could have been worse than that," the children's mother, Dominique Hagans, said Monday. "It's hard when they go to sleep because all they do is cry."

Police said an altercation occurred on the sidewalk at 210 N. Driver St. before the gunfire started. According to preliminary reports, the shots might have been fired from a blue sedan with tinted windows.

Troy Lee Howard, 48, was visiting family on the street, according to his brother, and was shot in the thigh outside 210 N. Driver St. He underwent surgery Monday to repair broken bones from his hip to his knee, but he could be released from the hospital Tuesday, his brother said.

Investigators were still trying Monday to determine the circumstances surrounding the incident. They said there was no evidence that Howard was the intended victim of the gunman.

Crime Stoppers has offered a reward of up to $1,200 for tips that lead to an arrest in the case.

Resident Ken DePlanche Jr. said Driver Street has been the site of several drive-by shootings.

"It's been crazy on this block," DePlanche said. "Our house been shot at two or three times in the last nine months."

Durham Deputy Police Chief Stephen Mihaich disputed characterizations that the street was getting out of control. Before Sunday, he said, there had been three shootings in the last seven months – one self-inflicted and the other two people were shot on their porches.

"Certainly, one shooting, and certainly, one shooting involving children is one too many," Mihaich said. "If (residents) see people out there with guns and they see people shooting, they need to call us."

Hagans said she doesn't plan to return to Driver Street, adding that she worries that her children's wounds will leave physical and emotional scars.

"I'm going to go back and clean up and get my clothes, but I'm not going to stay there. I don't want my kids in that environment anymore," she said.

Like police, she begged for area residents to come forward with any information about the shooting.

"People just need to sit down and think about their actions sometimes. They actually don't affect (just) themselves. They affect other people (and) other people's families and children," she said.

Anyone with information is asked to call police at 919-560-4281, extension 29123, or Crime Stoppers at 919-683-1200.