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November 13, 2013

2007: Fatal shooting at party gang-related

Originally published in the Nov. 17, 2007 edition of The Eagle

Ellen Myers didn't hear any noise from the house party across the street early Friday.

She didn't hear the gunshot that killed a 22-year-old man either.

In fact, she didn't realize anything had happened on her quiet street until police arrived to investigate a report of shots being fired at about 2:30 a.m. in the 1400 block of North Holyoke.

Witnesses told police that one man chased another from a house party across the street from Victory Temple Church of God in Christ, 1457 N. Holyoke.

Police say Mario Lewis was shot once in the upper torso and collapsed on the sidewalk as he ran west of the church at the southwest corner of 14th and Holyoke.

He was taken to Wesley Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead just before 3 a.m.

"This is gang-related," Lt. Jeff Easter said Friday. "There was an argument ," and the shooting occurred a short time later.

Myers, who has lived in the neighborhood since 1960, said she didn't know the victim but is familiar with the three young men who live or hang out at the house where the party was.

"They're good boys," she said.

They've shoveled snow or removed tree branches for her without being asked, she said.

The home's primary occupant is not a suspect, Easter said.

Lewis pleaded guilty to possession of marijuana in 2005, court records show, and was in and out of jail for repeated probation violations before being released for the final time June 10.

As of late Friday, police had no suspects in custody.

Lewis' death brings Wichita's homicide count for the year to 40.

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