Highway shooting investigation expands with two new reports

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - Kansas City Police on Friday night released two reports of additional shootings along metro highways, further expanding an investigation that has gripped the Kansas City area for a week.

Both of the new reports involve shootings in the so-called “Grandview Triangle,” where interstates 470 and 435 join 71 Highway, and where the majority of the recent shootings police believe to be connected have occurred.

The first of the two newly-disclosed incidents took place on Friday, March 28. A woman told police she was preparing to veer onto I-470 eastbound when she heard three loud pops from a car next to her. The woman told police she initially thought the pops were tires blowing and dismissed them, but after seeing media reports about shootings in the Triangle area, she searched her car for possible bullet holes. That’s when she made the discovery on her driver’s side door. She reported the incident on Monday.

The second report is heavily redacted. It also describes a female driver near the Triangle. This victim told police she was driving southbound last Friday at around 7:45 p.m. when she heard a loud thump. She later discovered a bullet hole on the passenger side of her vehicle, near the trunk.

Kansas City Police say they have linked at least twelve similar shootings around the metro in the last month. Since reports of the shootings gained prominence on Monday, dozens of tips have come in, along with additional reports.

On Friday night, it was unclear whether the newly released reports represented two additional shootings, bringing the total to fourteen, or whether they were part of the twelve police were already considering.

Police and highway patrol have stepped up their presence near the Triangle this week, and no shootings have been reported to have occurred since last Sunday. Federal agents from the ATF and FBI have been assisting Kansas City Police in their investigation.

On Friday, KCPD Chief Darryl Forte defended his department’s practice of keeping most details of the investigation, including possible suspect information, close to the vest.

“When you look at the other investigations around the country, the biggest mistakes some of them made was coming out with inaccurate information from the beginning, you can’t take it back,” Forte told reporters.

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