Two arrests made in weekend shootings in Middletown

Middletown police made two arrests after a drive-by shooting that injured a teen on Friday and are continuing to investigate a second shooting on Saturday, according to Middletown Sgt. Earl Nelson.

Officers were called to North Sutphin Street about 4:30 p.m. Friday on a report of shots fired possibly near Monroe or Harrison streets.

Witness statements and video footage determined two shots were fired in the area of Harrison and North Avenue from a silver car that stopped at a residence in the 1900 block of North Avenue. That’s when four occupants got out and three ran. One person then drove away, according to a police report.

A short time later, a 16-year-old boy was found at a residence with a gunshot wound to his hand. Police determined the teen victim was shot when the shots were fired at the vehicle at North and Harrison, according to the report. The teen was taken to an area hospital for treatment.

An investigation turned up suspects in the shooting and officers served a search warrant in the 100 block of Harrison Street. Two firearms, one a “mini draco” that was believed to be used in the shooting, were found by officers. The firearms, ammunition and two cars were seized as part of the investigation.

Joseph Torres Tapia, 19, of Tampa, Florida, and a 17-year-old Middletown boy were both charged with felonious assault and the juvenile was additionally charged with carrying a concealed weapon. Torres Tapia was booked into the Middletown City Jail and the juvenile into the Butler County Juvenile Detention Center.

The second shooting happened about 3 p.m. Saturday in the area of Sixth and Lincoln streets. A teen boy was shot in the leg, said Nelson. Witnesses told police they heard tires screeching away after the shots were fired.

Nelson said detectives believe the second shooting is related to Friday afternoon’s gun violence.

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