Four young women were found shot to death in the same apartment in a rugged part of south Tulsa on Monday, apparent victims of a midday shooting spree at a building near a park along the Arkansas River. A 4-year-old boy was found unharmed.
Police wouldn't say whether the victims — all in their late teens or early 20s — were related or how they would have known each other, and wouldn't say whether the boy was related to any of them. Police said they did not yet know not yet know why the women were shot, and officers were searching for whoever committed the crime.
"Right now, we have no clear-cut suspect we're looking at at this point," said police spokesman Leland Ashley. "I don't want to strike fear in the community tonight, but we do have an individual or individuals who murdered four people. Do we know if there was a motive, like a jealous lover? We don't know that. We can't say if it was random or if someone knew (the victims)."
Ashley said detectives and officers were "beating the bushes" to figure out what happened.
The neighborhood around the Fairmont Terrace Apartments is a seedy oasis in the rest of south Tulsa. The Southern Hills Country Club is a mile east and Oral Roberts University is two miles southeast.
At the apartment complex, bed sheets or cardboard hang as improvised draperies in many windows behind a black wrought-iron gate. The guard shack is empty and signs read "Curfew 10 p.m. for everyone, everyday" and "Photo ID required to be on property."
The building's website says a courtesy safety patrol is available after dark, but police believe the killings occurred between 11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Officer Jill Roberson said police received a 911 call about 12:30 p.m., and Ashley said someone had spoken to someone at the apartment less than an hour earlier.
Frankie Williams, 25, an oil field worker, said his girlfriend lives about 100 feet from the apartment where the women were found dead.
"She's going to be moving out right quick. This is not the place to be raising a 3-month-old," he said. "This is pretty intense."
Sennie Anderson, 20, is soon to mark two years at the apartment complex.
"I've been afraid since I moved in this place," she said, clutching her visibly upset 3-year-old daughter, Da'Mya. "I think it's getting worse."
Ashley said police were hopeful someone in the community would come forward with more information about the shootings.
"We still have a lot of questions that need to be answered at this point. ... Our concern is for the small child, possibly having to witness this horrific tragedy," Ashley said.