Richmond Shooting Victim Dies at Hospital in City's 2nd Homicide Case

By LAURA DUDNICK BAY CITY NEWS
|  Sunday, Mar 23, 2014  |  Updated 2:23 PM PDT
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Richmond Shooting Victim Dies at Hospital	in City's 2nd Homicide

NBC Bay Area

The homicide is the second in Richmond this week, and second in the city this year as well.

A man shot in Richmond Friday night died at a hospital early Saturday morning, becoming the city's second homicide victim both this week and this year, a police sergeant said.

Officers responded at about 10 p.m. to reports of a shooting in the area of South 35th Street and Wall Avenue and found the victim, later identified as Clarence Wesley Celestine Jr., suffering from multiple gunshot wounds, Richmond police Sgt. Nicole Abetkov said.

Celestine, a 24-year-old Richmond resident, was transported to John Muir Medical Center in critical condition.

At about 2:45 a.m., police were notified that Celestine had died at the hospital, according to Abetkov.

A dark-colored Acura or similar type vehicle was seen leaving the area, but police haven't determined whether this was a drive-by shooting, Abetkov said.

Anyone with information about the crime is urged to contact the Richmond Police Department. Calls may be made anonymously to 232-TIPS, or those with information may also call Detective Chris Decious at (510) 621-1747.

The homicide is the second in Richmond this week, and second in the city this year as well. The first occurred just before 10 p.m. Thursday in the area of South Fourth Street and Florida Avenue. Police had not released that victim's identity as of Saturday morning.

There was a time when deadly shootings in Richmond seemed commonplace, but not anymore. These are the first homicides in Richmond in five months.

"It's not just homicides, but it's violent crimes across the board that have been reduced a very substantial amount," Abetkov said.

Richmond police said the recent five-month period when no homicides happened was the longest stretch in at least 10 years.

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