Violent Last Week of 2015 Leaves At Least Four Dead in Philadelphia

The last week of 2015 has been a violent one in Philadelphia, leaving at least four men dead in separate shootings around the city.

In the most recent in the spate of deadly shootings, gunfire in North Philadelphia claimed the life of a 21-year-old man early Thursday morning.

Police said the gunman remained at large Thursday afternoon.

Officers discovered the victim lying on Clearfield Street near 25th shortly after midnight when they received a 9-1-1 call, police said. The victim was taken to Temple University Hospital, but doctors were unable to save him, and he was pronounced dead there at 12:40 a.m. Police said he had been shot several times throughout his body.

The motive for the shooting was unknown late Thursday morning, and police continued to investigate.

According to police statistics, the New Year's Eve homicide was the city's 280th murder in 2015, marking a roughly 13 percent increase in homicides compared with both last year and the year before. Compared with 2012, however, when Philadelphia saw more than 300 homicides, the murder rate is down 15 percent for this year.

Police on Thursday also identified the victim in a deadly shooting in West Philadelphia's Carroll Park section that happened Wednesday afternoon. In that shooting, police said 57-year-old Seth Fassett, of the 200 block of South 45th Street, was shot to death at Girard Avenue and Redfield Street shortly after 2 p.m. during an argument over car-repair work he was doing. The alleged shooter, whom police said is a 39-year-old man, had not yet been arrested as of Thursday afternoon. Police said the shooting remained under investigation.

Elsewhere on Redfield Street in West Philadelphia on Wednesday, police said 23-year-old Naeem Garfield was shot to death just before 8 p.m. about two blocks from his home. Garfield, of the 300 block of North Redfield Street, was near the corner of Filbert Street when police say an unknown gunman shot him once in the head. He later died at Presbyterian Medical Center. Police said they don't know what motivated that shooting.

Another victim of deadly gun violence in the last week of 2015, who was shot dead in North Philadelphia on Tuesday night, was identified Thursday as 25-year-old Jeremy Rojas. Police said Rojas was on 8th Street near Ontario about 11:45 p.m. Tuesday when someone shot him several times.

Police found Rojas lying face-down on the street, picked him up and rushed him to Temple University Hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries and was pronounced dead at 12:08 a.m. Wednesday. Police said Rojas lived on Ontario Street about a block from where he was killed, and that they haven't yet determined who shot him or why.

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