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Police seek fresh leads in 2009 double homicide in southeast Wichita

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Friday, Dec. 21, 2012, at 6:09 p.m.
  • Updated Friday, Dec. 21, 2012, at 7:35 p.m.

They were innocent bystanders caught by a hail of gunfire on a January night in 2009, and Wichita police still don’t know who killed them.

Keo Intavong, 66, and Jeffrey Chitanavong, 22, were among more than a dozen people in a detached garage at 2931 E. Dunham, Lt. Todd Ojile said. That’s just northwest of 31st Street South and Hillside.

The two men were part of a crowd of about 75 people gathered for a wake honoring Somphit Makthepharak, the final event in a nine-day mourning period following her death.

Shortly before 9:30 p.m. on that Saturday, witnesses reported seeing two vehicles drive slowly east on Dunham. They then heard several shots fired from weapons in both vehicles, Ojile said.

Once the shooting had ceased, witnesses reported that Intavong and Chitanavong where struck by bullets fired into the garage. Another 15 people in the garage area were injured by either direct hits, bullets that ricocheted or debris sent flying by the bullets, Ojile said.

“They were innocent bystanders,” he said of Intavong and Chitanavong. “No gang ties, no criminal history, no problems. They just happened to be inside of this garage” when the shooting began.

Descriptions of the first vehicle varied, but the second was a small, light-colored four-door vehicle. Ojile said investigators think the Dunham shooting incident was a retaliation for the September 2006 shooting death of Danny Dang at a wedding reception at the Mid-America All-Indian Center.

Someone who had been at the 2006 wedding reception returned from out of state for the wake, Ojile said, and the shooters appeared to be targeting him.

“We believe he was at the house at the time of the shooting,” Ojile said. “He was not hurt.”

Anyone with information about the incident in which Intavong and Chitanavong were killed is encouraged to contact Crime Stoppers by phone at 316-267-2111, by text message to CRIMES (274637) and beginning their text message with TIP217, or on the Web at www.wsccs.com.

All tips will be anonymous. Crime Stoppers is offering $2,000 – double the normal payout – for information leading to an arrest in the case.

Reach Stan Finger at 316-268-6437 or sfinger@wichitaeagle.com.

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