St. Paul leaders call for end to violence; 3rd person charged in park shooting


A collection of city leaders that included Mayor Chris Coleman and Police Chief Tom Smith gathered in St. Paul Wednesday to call for an end to the recent violence.

The city was hit with a string of violent incidents in the past week – two people killed over Sunday and Monday, 30 reports of shots fired since last Friday, and nine people with gunshot wounds.

Coleman Wednesday blamed the proliferation of illegal guns, the Pioneer Press reports, adding he's hoping to shift the budget to allow for more officers and investigators to be on the streets this summer.

Coleman and the others held the news conference at Indian Mounds Park, where 18-year-old Bobby Collins was shot in the back of the head Sunday evening. Investigators have said gang arguments led to the shooting (more on the charges that have been filed below).

At the news conference, Smith said too many people are "disrespecting" and "challenging" each other on social media to settle things in real life, a trend he called "unacceptable," KSTP reports.

Police earlier this week said they're increasing patrols and funneling resources toward addressing gun violence in the city.

At least seven people have been killed in St. Paul this year. A Pioneer Press report shows there were 17 homicides in St. Paul in 2015.

3rd suspect charged in park melee, shooting

A third suspect is now charged in the Sunday night fight and shooting at Indian Mounds park.

Rayvion Brooks, 18, is charged with committing a crime for the benefit of a gang, as well as first-degree riot.

According to the charges, a woman at the scene with Brooks maced several men she knew as gang members that had approached her and Brooks. Someone then swung a tree branch, and that led to an exchange of gun fire.

The complaint says witnesses at the scene said Brooks had a gun and was the "initial shooter."

After Brooks was arrested, he admitted to being a gang member and getting into a verbal altercation prior to the shooting, but denied he ever had a gun or fired shots, the complaint says. He said he ran from the scene when he heard gunfire.

The charges say the confrontation started over accusations that a gang name had been stolen.

Two others were charged Tuesday: 24-year-old Prince Kavanaugh Williams of Minneapolis, and 18-year-old Rashawn Donell Porter of St. Paul.

Nobody has been charged with killing Collins at this point.

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