PAnews.com, Port Arthur, Texas

April 2, 2013

West End community mum on shootings

Mary Meaux
The Port Arthur News

PORT ARTHUR — By Mary Meaux

The News staff writer

An 18-year-old man is behind bars on a probation violation in relation to a weekend shooting and more arrests are expected.

Telly Roshard “Tello” Joyce Jr., of Port Arthur, was arrested Tuesday on the probation violation.

On Saturday a disturbance between two groups erupted into violence outside Old School Shack, 901 Houston Ave. Marcus John “Big Country” Senegal, 29, received a gunshot wound to the abdomen and died from his injuries. A second person received a gunshot wound to the leg.

Shortly after, a second exchange of gunfire occurred at Prince Hall Apartments and two people received gunshot wounds.

More violence followed in the early morning hours Tuesday at the apartments when three suspects got out of vehicles and fired between 30 to 50 rounds. Nine to 10 vehicles were hit and one person was injured. His injury is not believed to be life threatening.

Police said witnesses, even the victims, have been unwilling to speak about the shootings.

“Unfortunately we have victims who do not want to speak with police. In Texas a victim has to be willing to press charges,” Port Arthur Police Officer Marcello Molfino said. “From a police standpoint, we can work every crime scene and do the work but if we don’t have the victim’s cooperation, we don’t have a case.”

Some victims or witnesses fear retaliation, he said.

Molfino said Joyce was allegedly at the Old School Shack at the time of the first shooting. He was not charged with murder.

Speaking in general about the three incidents Molfino said the shootings are about “East Side, West Side.”

“A lot of these guys are not claiming certain gangs,” he said. “It’s an East Side, West Side issue. They’re arguing about land they don’t even own. There’s no reason for shooting 30 to 50 rounds into an apartment complex. People are scared. We want to stop this before someone has to plan another funeral.”

Multiple caliber guns were used during the three incidents but the guns themselves aren’t the issue he’s worried about.

“These individuals (who committed the crimes) are not allowed to have guns, they are felons,” he said. “It’s not a gun issue, it’s a people issue.”

Molfino would like to see church ministers, community leaders and sports figures to speak to the youth who may be involved and tell them “to put their guns down” adding that there are innocent people — elderly and children — who deserve to be safe and not in fear.

PAPD is asking anyone with information about this shooting or the others that occurred over the weekend to contact the police department.

PAPD’s Street Crimes Unit and Criminal Investigations Division are handling the investigation.

Email: mmeaux@panews.com

Twitter: @MaryMeauxPANews