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Bystander was shot in the back during shootout at light rail station, charges say

Gunfire erupted on a light rail train between two groups of males, the charges say.
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An 18-year-old is now charged in connection with a gunfight in broad daylight at a St. Paul light rail station that resulted in a bystander getting shot in the back.

Isaiah Bracy, of St. Paul, is accused of exchanging fire with another man in a possible gang confrontation at the Dale Street station. He's now been charged with two counts of second degree assault with a dangerous weapon.

The incident happened at around 4:40 p.m. on Monday, and left a 38-year-old man with non-life-threatening injuries. Police say he wasn't the intended target.

According to the criminal complaint:

A group of males boarded at the 10th Street station, and as they approached the next stop, the conductor said they were looking through the door window at another group of males. They were standing at the corner of Dale and University and appeared to be throwing "gang signs" as the train passed.

When the train came to a step, loud yelling and then gunshots were heard inside. The conductor said she saw a male shooting a handgun.

There was a series of shots fired, a pause, and then more shots. Police arriving at the station found a 38-year-old had been hit in the back. He told officers he'd just left a friend's apartment and was trying to catch the westbound train. He said nobody had any reason to shoot him.

Further investigation from police found that Bracy fired shots at two males on the platform, one of whom returned fire. A bullet from the return fire struck the bystander.

Police found two 9mm shells and multiple .40 caliber shell casings at the scene. Bracy was identified as one of the shooters from surveillance cameras. He was arrested when he arrived for a meeting with his probation officer.

Concern over St. Paul shootings

The incident at the light rail station was one of two shootings in St. Paul on Monday, the other of which in the Summit-University neighborhood left a man dead, according to the City of St. Paul. That was the ninth homicide in St. Paul so far this year, WCCO reports.

Mayor Chris Coleman and Police Chief Todd Axtell held a joint press conference on Friday, calling on the community to stand together against gun violence.

According to the Pioneer Press, reports of shots fired in the city are up 75 percent this year, with police looking to work more with community groups and increase their presence in neighborhoods suffering from gun violence.

"If you shoot guns in the City of Saint Paul, we will find you and put you in jail," Axtell said Friday, according to the newspaper.

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