Shootings, robbery may be linked

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 9, 2010

NATCHEZ — Natchez Police are investigating a possible link between two shootings and an armed robbery that occurred this week.

Monday, two males armed with pistols entered Kentucky Fried Chicken on Seargent S. Prentiss Drive at approximately 9:30 p.m., Police Chief Mike Mullins said.

The suspects pointed their pistols at employees and attempted to open the cash register. Mullins said the suspects were unsuccessful in accessing the cash register, and fled the scene on foot before police arrived.

The suspects, however, did manage to steal a customer’s wallet, which was lying on the front counter. Mullins said the wallet contained a small amount of cash.

Approximately two-and-a-half hours later at 11:58 p.m., Mullins said officers were dispatched to a house on North Commerce Street Extension, where John Lewis, 30, was found shot in the arm.

“The officers saw two people wearing ski masks and they ran off when they saw the officers,” Mullins said. “The victim called in and said he had been shot by someone who robbed him. (The suspects) took some cash.”

Lewis was transported to University Medical Center in Jackson, where he is listed in stable condition. Mullins said it is unclear whether Lewis knew his assailants.

A second man is listed in stable condition at Natchez Regional Center following a Sunday shooting at Club Paradise on Franklin Street.

At approximately 2:15 a.m., Keith Fry, 32, was driving through Club Paradise’s parking lot when he was shot in the shoulder and leg, Mullins said.

“(The victim) drove himself to the hospital,” Mullins said. “He said he does not know who shot him. He didn’t see them.”

Mullins said evidence suggests the three incidents are related.

“We have several suspects who have been identified and we expect to make arrests in these cases,” Mullins said.