Latest incident not linked to I-270 shootings

| 12/17/2003

Several shootings have taken place over the past few days in Columbus, OH, but so far, investigators have not found a link to the series of bullets fired along or near Interstate 270 recently, the Franklin County Sheriff’s Department said in a statement.

A bullet hit a home along Refugee Road in the southeast part of the city about 3:30 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 13. Most of the shootings have taken place in the southwest part of the city near the I-270 loop.

According to WEWS TV, the bullet entered the home through a screen door and passed through another door before becoming lodged in a chair. The Sheriff’s Department said ballistics tests showed that bullet did not come from the same gun as the highway shooter.

Two other incidents have also occurred – at a home on Brown Road Monday and on I-270 just east of I-71 Tuesday, where a car was hit. Tests are under way on the bullet fired at the home, while police were unable to discover what struck the car Tuesday on I-270.

Fifteen shootings have taken place in Columbus, OH, since May. Authorities say the 15 shootings – all at or near the southwestern part of I-270, a loop highway surrounding Columbus – are linked.

Only one bullet hit a human target. It struck and killed area resident Gail Knisley Nov. 25, just before the Thanksgiving holiday. Knisley was riding in the car of a friend who was taking her to see a doctor. A pickup truck was hit just a few hours later nearby. Other bullets have hit a school and other cars.

At least four commercial motor vehicles have been hit by bullets, according to police and press reports, including a Yellow Freight truck, a UPS delivery truck, a Coca-Cola truck and an 18-wheeler out of Texas.

Police are moving closer to solving the case. While they would not release many details, they have now received more than 1,000 tips, and they have linked the bullets from five of the shootings through ballistics.

The Franklin County Sheriff’s Department, which is leading the investigation, has put out public alerts asking the shooter or shooters to contact them and start a dialog. In addition to the hotline set up for tips - (614) 462-4646 – the Sheriff’s Department has also set up a post office box for the shooter to use to contact authorities. It is PO Box 360562, Columbus, OH, 43236-0562.