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Tacoma neighbor describes gunshots

SPECIAL REPORT
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• Story: D.C. area victims

TACOMA, Washington (CNN) -- Federal agents conducted a search of a Tacoma duplex Wednesday that officials said was connected to the sniper investigation in the Washington, D.C., area -- more than 2,400 miles away. Authorities painstakingly searched the residence's yard and could be seen removing a large tree stump. Deborah Waters lives across the street from the duplex and spoke to CNN's Connie Chung.

CHUNG: Do I understand correctly that you heard gunfire about a month ago?

WATERS: It wasn't a month ago. We have heard gunfire in this neighborhood, because it's not the best neighborhood, before. But we were just trying to remember stuff. Me and my husband were ... trying to remember things, and we do remember that [when the previous renter] lived there ... we did hear a lot of gunfire in the neighborhood. We actually called 911, and they heard the gunfire and stuff, and then the police came out, but nothing ever came of that.

CHUNG: All right, once again when did that happen?

WATERS: That was ... probably around December of last year, because it was before the man that lives in the house now moved in the house.

CHUNG: How long have you been living in that neighborhood?

WATERS: We've just lived here a year, since October of last year.

CHUNG: And you know the person who lives in the house now?

WATERS: Yes, we do.

CHUNG: And this person obviously, as we have reported, is not considered to be anybody who is even a suspect or is anything of the kind and gladly allowed agents into his home and into the back yard to conduct their search. You say that you heard the gunfire on other occasions when the previous resident was living there?

WATERS: That's correct.

CHUNG: How often would you say you would hear that gunfire?

WATERS: [S]ince we moved in ... we'd hear it maybe once a month and then it started getting more regular and that's when we started calling 911.

CHUNG: And each time you called 911, did they respond? Did the police come?

WATERS: Oh, yeah. One time the 911 operator actually heard the gunfire in the background and asked my husband, "Are you outside?" He said, "Yes, I'm trying to figure out where those shots are coming from."She said, "Hurry up and get back inside." That was the last time we heard them, and we haven't heard gunfire around the neighborhood now for awhile.

CHUNG: How far away do you live from the home?

WATERS: We're right across the street, directly across the street.

CHUNG: So you have a very good vantage point. When you heard the gunfire could you and your husband tell it was coming from that house, or was it?

WATERS: No, we couldn't tell. In fact, it didn't sound like it was coming from that house. It sounded like it was somewhere close, but I wouldn't say that close. We kind of felt like maybe it was -- there is what we call a dirt hill right up the road from us that's just a big area where there's just dirt hills and stuff that the kids go and play and different things like that -- we thought maybe it was coming from over there. Now that this is going on, we thought maybe it was actually closer. We just really couldn't tell.

CHUNG: Did you know the people who lived there before?

WATERS: We did not know the people that lived there before. In fact ... thinking back on it, we hardly ever saw anybody from that -- it's actually a duplex -- we never really saw anybody from that side of the house come out a lot or anything. So we can't really say about those people. We know the people who live there now, and he comes out all the time and he's just a great person.



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