At least one gunman sprayed a North Philadelphia street corner Wednesday night during a "very reckless and deadly" drive-by shooting, Philadelphia police said.
Local rapper General Reezy was among those killed, according to police. A woman also died and four others were injured.
The shooting happened shortly before 10 p.m. when a silver minivan driving west on Huntingdon Street suddenly turned south on 12th Street, stopped and fired into a crowd with an AK-47 assault riffle "or one of its derivatives."
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Police recovered from the scene 12 cartridges consistent with that style of firearm, Capt. Jack Ryan said.
"You can get shot in the leg and get killed with these kinds of rounds," he said. "You could hit someone four blocks away with that weapon."
As of Thursday afternoon, police are still searching for a motive and at least two suspects. Ryan indicated that all the victims lived in the immediate neighborhood and the two people who died both had criminal records, according to court documents.
Reezy, whose real name is Averill Davenport, and the woman identified as Niesha Cooper, were both shot in the chest. Police said they died at a nearby hospital.
Cooper's sister, Tiesher Cooper, told NBC10 that her sibling would give "the shirt off her back" to anyone who needed it.
"She was so kind-hearted, very humble," Tiesha Cooper said. ""It’s horrible that you can’t even sit in the neighborhood that you grow up in and not worry about someone just coming and shooting it up."
Police Commissioner Richard Ross said the other four victims, all men, ranged in age from 27 to 51. A 30-year-old man was placed in critical condition with a gunshot wound to the chest.
Three others - ages 27, 34 and 51 - suffered gunshot wounds to the arms or legs. Police did not update their conditions during a Thursday news conference.
The deadly shots rang out just hours after local and state law enforcement officials gathered for an annual gun violence task force in Philadelphia. Mayor Jim Kenney was among those who spoke.
Later, he tweeted that Philadelphia officials have "taken steps to address gun violence in our city, but we need to also work closely with our partners at the state and federal level for meaningful reform."
But on Thursday, Ryan criticized gun laws, which, he said, "are in shambles."
"It’s just a patchwork quilt across all 50 states that, frankly, feed the illegal purchase of firearms and feeds the pipeline into the criminal world," he said.
Reezy, who had a lengthy criminal record including firearm, assault and drug charges and spent several years in prison, was scheduled to perform at South Philadelphia's Theatre of the Living Arts on Aug. 25 at the Stop the Violence Tour.