At least three people were reportedly killed while three others were wounded after a shooting in Northwest Washington on Saturday, garnering criticism from city leaders who have failed to curb the District's surging homicide count.

During an interview at the scene of the crime on Longfellow Street, Police Chief Robert J. Contee III said that they have been talking about gun violence for some time. The official said the situation was not only happening in Washington, D.C., which he considered as an overall sickness that is observed in the community. The police chief said that gun violence was a plague to the region and has been making residents suffer.

Weekend Shooting

Authorities identified the three fatalities as 31-year-old Donnetta Dyson, 24-year-old Keenan Braxton, and 37-year-old Johnny Joyner. Dyson was found to be a patient services assistant working at MedStar Washington Hospital Center's operating room. The hospital revealed their relationship with the victim in a statement.

Hospital officials said, "Donnetta worked tirelessly serving our patients and the community. We send our heartfelt condolences to Donnetta's family and friends." Dyson's family was unable to be reached on Sunday.

Officials reported that the District has observed an increase of 15% to its homicide rate compared to the same timeframe last year. The number of homicides in 2020 was the highest recorded in the last 16 years, the Washington Post reported.

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Police continued to search for the suspects of the shooting on Saturday evening, who were believed to have driven down a road and got out of their vehicle before shooting. The criminals allegedly opened fire at a group gathered on the street. They then got into their car and quickly fled the scene of the crime.

In a Twitter post, D.C. police shared the photo of a vehicle, a black Honda Accord, that officials believed was related to the fatal shooting. Police put up a $75,000 reward for anyone who could provide useful information that could lead to the arrest of the suspects.

Law enforcement personnel did not immediately reveal a motive for the crime and initially withheld the identities of the victims prior to notifying their relatives, Fox News reported.

Surge of Gun Violence Crimes

At the time of the shooting, police officers who were in the area heard gunshots, prompting them to immediately investigate the source of the sounds. They discovered six people were shot at the intersection of Seventh and Longfellow streets.

Contee said that the wounded victims were immediately taken to hospitals while the other three were pronounced dead at the scene. The three patients were expected to recover from non-life-threatening injuries.

The police chief said, "We believe the suspects in this vehicle exited, fired shots into a crowd of individuals that were in the 600 block of Longfellow Street," while referring to the black Honda Accord.

Contee noted that police were still investigating why the suspects shot at the group of residents. He also revealed that a firearm was discovered at the scene of the crime. So far, 597 people have been the victims of shooting crimes this year, ABC News reported.

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