An employee of D.C.’s Safe Passage initiative died after being shot Monday, and police are still looking for suspects.
The shooting happened after an argument on Monday afternoon at the intersection of 5th Street and Somerset Place NW in front of Coolidge High School. Three schools in the immediate area — in addition to Coolidge, Ida B. Wells Middle School and Whittier Elementary School — were placed on lockdown for about an hour.
Police say the man, identified as Michael Gaddis, 36, of Northwest D.C., worked with the Safe Passage Safe Blocks program, which aims to keep kids safe as they travel to and from school.
In a news briefing Monday evening, D.C. police Cmdr. Carlos Heraud said the Safe Passage worker, a man who was off-duty at the time, was transported to a hospital in critical condition.
“Gun violence as a whole is unacceptable. Anytime it hits this close to our children, it’s even more egregious,” Heraud said. “Children should be able to come to school, be safe out there while at school and leave school safely.”
The incident marks the second time in less than a week that Coolidge and Whittier have been placed on alert due to a nearby shooting. Police responded to gunfire in the 6400 block of 5th Street NW on Friday.
Police believe the suspect in Monday’s shooting fled the scene in a vehicle. After law enforcement secured the area, students were dismissed away from the crime scene.
“We are out in the neighborhood trying to obtain more footage to try to get a better picture of exactly what occurred,” Heraud added. “As soon as we do have any kind of description (of the suspect), we can release to the public. We’ll make sure we get that out.”
Below is where police said the shooting happened.
Editor’s Note: This story has been updated following the death of the victim.
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