During a party with more than 150 people flowing through the streets of Lawnhill Terrace on Custer St. in Stamford, police would be called to the area three times for reports of shots fired and a 21-year-old man would lose his life.
Darious Jones was killed overnight Saturday into Sunday when he took a bullet through the chest, an hour after police left the scene the first time with two arrests already made, said Capt. Richard Conklin of the Stamford Police Dept. Three people walking with him would suffer an assortment of other gunshot wounds.
Police were initially called to Custer St. around 11 p.m. Saturday for reports of gunshots. Uniformed officers responded and, while they didn't find anyone with a gun, made two arrests for breach-of-peace or similar charges, said Conklin. While officers were transporting the two initial arrests back to the station, another shots fired call came over the radio.
Racing back to the scene, Conklin said they would discover Jones in serious condition. He would pass away before reaching the hospital, Conklin said. Three other injured victims were transported to Stamford Hospital, ages 19, 24 and 25. By Monday morning, one would be released, the others would remain at the hospital in unknown condition, according to information from Conklin.
According to police, two black males hid behind a car in the first block of Custer St. as Jones' group walked toward them. One man was armed with a semi-automatic handgun and sprang from behind the car, in "an ambush," as the group neared, releasing a volley of shots and hitting Jones and his associates multiple times.
"This sent everyone running through the complex for their lives," Conklin said.
While police were processing the scene, by then approximately an hour-and-a-half into Sunday, more gunfire would erupt from the outskirts of the community. Police called in a security detail to protect the officers processing the scene.
Conklin said a large number of shell casings were found at the scene and they all point to the same gun. Conklin said while the department had been gathering evidence, they were still working on theory. He said he didn't know if Jones was targeted, if the activity was gang-related, or these four simply happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Jones, Conklin explained, had recently been released from jail. He had been convicted on charges stemming from a December 2006 home-invasion in which an 80-year-old woman who came home in the middle of the incident was tied up. Conklin said while it was unknown if this incident had anything to do with the shooting, he found it unlikely.
Police are urging anyone who might have information about the incident to please come forward and speak to police.