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3 charged in D.C. shootings; police seek fourth suspect

By the CNN Wire Staff
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D.C. shooting leaves 9 injured
  • Authorities have already charged three suspects with murder in the twin shootings
  • Fourth suspect eluded capture after police chase
  • Family, friends of victims gathered for candlelight vigil to honor their loved ones

Washington (CNN) -- Police continued their search Thursday for a fourth suspect wanted in connection with a shooting spree that killed four people and wounded five others in southern Washington D.C.

Authorities have already charged three other suspects -- including a 14-year-old boy -- with 'first degree murder while armed' in the twin shootings that took place Tuesday night.

Officers responded to the first shooting about 7:30 p.m. Tuesday on Galveston Street where they found 17-year-old Tavon Nelson wounded. He was pronounced dead shortly afterward, said Metropolitan Police Officer Quintin Peterson.

At the second location -- on South Capitol and Brandywine streets -- police found eight people who had been shot.

Of the victims, two men -- William Jones III, 19, and Devaughn Boyd, 18 -- died Wednesday as did a teenage girl, Brishell Jones, 16.

The five surviving victims -- three men and two women -- were recovering Wednesday. Police did not release their names because they are witnesses.

WJLA: Bloodshed in southeast D.C.

Officers spotted a minivan driving away from the scene of the second set of shootings and pursued it.

The chase went through D.C. into Maryland's Prince George's County and back into D.C. where the suspects crashed the vehicle, Peterson said.

As the minivan's occupants tried to run, police arrested three of them -- but the fourth got away. Officers also recovered an assault rifle that the men inside the minivan tossed during the chase, Peterson said.

The arrested suspects are: Nathaniel Dwight Simms, 26; Orlando Carter, 20, and a 14-year-old whose name was withheld because he is a juvenile.

Simms and Carter were arraigned in D.C. Superior Court on Wednesday. Both are being held without bond until a preliminary hearing set for April 15.

The teenager was taken to family court.

Late Wednesday, friends and family members of the victims gathered for a candlelight vigil to honor their loved ones.

WUSA: Family, friends honor victims

"This is a horrible, senseless tragedy," said Mayor Adrian Fenty. "Police will work around the clock to ensure this case is brought to closure."

Officials said they don't have a motive in the shootings.

"We've made a lot of progress to stop gang retaliation and violence, and in the end if this ends up being some kind of gang retaliation -- then shame on all of us," said Metro Police Chief Cathy Lanier.