South Sound News

Tacoma neighborhood concerned with increasing frequency of drive-by shootings

TACOMA, Wash. — The Hilltop community in Tacoma sounded like a war zone, as gunfire erupted just before 8 pm Tuesday.

“I didn’t hear handguns. I heard semis, like it was ‘boom, boom, boom,’” said Becky Renzi.

Renzi’s home security camera captured the violence.

According to Tacoma police, as a car went down South 25th Street, someone inside started shooting at a group holding a party at Sheridan Park and some people in that group started shooting back, as those in the park started running for their lives.

“The first thought was, oh my God, my daughter is literally outside right here playing in the front yard with the neighbor kid. Thankfully, they had just gone inside,” said Renzi.

Police say there were no reported injuries.

But one bullet went through the window of a home across the street.

Lisa Kempf says it barely missed her husband who was lying on the couch.

And it’s not the first time their house has been hit.

“It sucks that we have to get used to it. There’s been a couple of times -- my daughter and I last year, where we had to get on the ground,” said Kempf.

Neighbors say they enjoy the people in their community, but they feel powerless to do anything about the violence, which they say is getting worse.

“My children are suffering, I’m suffering, and our community is suffering. That’s the sad reality of where we’re living. A lot of people say, ‘why don’t you just move?’ Where can I move? We’re stuck here,” said Renzi.  “Stay in my house, make sure my kids are safe, and at the end of the day, if there’s a shooting, hit the floor and hope that we don’t die.”

Police say they have no motive or suspects identified.

Investigators say they’re not getting much cooperation from witnesses but add this was an isolated incident.