Mayor: Overnight shooting on Ocean Blvd. result of rival gangs looking to ‘finish fighting it out’

Mayor: Overnight shooting on Ocean Blvd. result of rival gangs looking to ‘finish fighting it out’
Several people were injured in a shooting along Ocean Boulevard around 12:30 a.m. Sunday.

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C. (WMBF) – After meeting with Myrtle Beach’s chief of police and two city managers, Mayor Brenda Bethune said the shooting early Sunday morning on Ocean Boulevard looks to be gang-related.

"All of the real time crime unit information does lead to that. It’s another situation very similar to what we had last weekend, where these were two rival gangs who brought their dispute into Myrtle Beach to finish fighting it out,” Bethune said.

A May 17 shooting on Ocean Boulevard involved rival gang members from Chesterfield County, authorities said.

So far, no arrests have been made in the May 24 shooting.

Earlier on Sunday, Bethune said “the actions of a few miscreants” have ruined the vacations of others.

“This is two weekends in a row where the wrong type of visitors came to our city with total disregard for our laws and with no respect for our law enforcement,” Bethune said in a statement. “What’s worse is they have no value for society.”

Mayor Bethune’s statement can be read in full below:

"THIS IS TWO WEEKENDS IN A ROW WHERE THE WRONG TYPE OF VISITORS CAME TO OUR CITY WITH TOTAL DISREGARD FOR OUR LAWS AND WITH NO RESPECT FOR OUR LAW ENFORCEMENT.

WHAT’S WORSE IS THEY HAVE NO VALUE FOR SOCIETY.

THE ACTIONS OF A FEW MISCREANTS HAVE RUINED THE VACATIONS OF OTHERS AND HAVE TARNISHED OUR FAMILY FRIENDLY ATMOSPHERE.

THEIR VIOLENT BEHAVIOR HAS LEFT OUR RESIDENTS, OUR BUSINESSES, AND OUR VISITORS FEARFUL AND ANGRY. I UNDERSTAND AND SHARE THOSE FEELINGS.

WE WILL NOT TOLERATE VIOLENCE AND WE ARE RESOLVED TO END THIS UNLAWFUL BEHAVIOR. IF YOU CANNOT COME HERE AND RESPECT OUR LAWS AND OUR COMMUNITY, THEN STAY HOME OR GO TO JAIL."

Councilman Gregg Smith said Sunday the two recent Ocean Boulevard shootings are “completely unacceptable.”

Smith said that in both shootings, “perpetrators were identified and arrested within minutes.”

“I applaud the Myrtle Beach Police Department and our partner agencies for their quick response to these terrible events. Violent crime in the city has decreased by 19 percent in the last two years, and we are dedicated to maintaining this downward trajectory despite the events of the past week,” Smith said in a statement.

The number of suspects, their names and specific charges in connection with the May 24 shooting were not immediately available.

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