SUMTER, SC (WACH) -The South Sumter neighborhood once known as a peaceful and quiet community has been hit with a spark of violence since the beginning of 2014. There have been not one, not two, but nine shootings since January.
Those shootings now have the Sumter Police Department stepping up law enforcement efforts to keep the citizens safe and to catch those responsible.
"We have taken measures from our law enforcement perspective," said Captain Jeffery Jackson with the Sumter Police. "We've come into the area, we've set up road blocks, we've done foot patrol in an effort to identify the individuals responsible and we're continuing those efforts on a daily basis.â??
So far, Captain Jackson says investigators have been unable to identify suspects in eight out of the nine shootings.
The most recent and only suspect identified is 17-year-old Dominik Dingle who police say was caught on home surveillance video, running towards an SUV firing a weapon. He's later seen picking up the shell casings and throwing them away. Dingle turned himself into police Thursday afternoon.
In hopes of identifying the other suspects involved in the shootings, Captain Jackson says by partnering with the religious community, they're hopeful citizens will become more comfortable when coming forward with information.
"We've went to their congregation in effort to solicit information from the congregation as to who may be responsible for these shootings," said Jackson.
These acts, according to officials, are not random. Some of them involve the same individuals.
A Sumter police spokesperson says the shootings may be gang related.
If you have any information about these shootings, you're encouraged to contact Crime Stoppers at 1-888-Crime-SC.