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'There's too many children being shot': 2 boys wounded in Grand Center

Teenager with injuries to his foot and another juvenile struck in the left leg were taken to area hospitals, St. Louis police reports

ST. LOUIS — Two boys were wounded by gunfire Saturday afternoon near Josephine Baker Boulevard and Bell Avenue, St. Louis Metro Police said.

Both victims were conscious and breathing and transported to area hospitals.

"I hear gunshots all of the time now. Nighttime, daytime. It has become a constant thing," says Bridgett Lemchi, who admits she didn't hear the gunfire that rang out in her neighborhood in Grand Center around 2 o'clock Saturday.

"They're shooting right outside my door now? This is just too doggone close. This is utterly ridiculous."

The circumstances behind the double shooting are unclear at this point, and the boys' exact ages haven't been released, but SLMPD is investigating.

One victim in his late teens had a gunshot wound to the foot. The second victim, described as a juvenile, had a wound to his left leg.

Lemchi went outside, only to see a trail of blood on the sidewalk on Blumeyer Street. There are at least nine bullet holes now in a nearby apartment. Pieces from a gun and a shell casing are also on the ground.

Lemchi says when she moved to Grand Center nearly six years ago, she used to feel safe.

"I'm beginning to not feel safe here anymore, because it's just too much violence going on," Lemchi says.

Police say last week a 14-year-old girl, a 16-year-old boy and a 17-year-old girl were all struck when bullets hit at least two homes in the same area.

That's around 40 young people shot in the city this year.

"It's too many children being shot. I have nieces. I have nephews in this area. I don't want nothing to happen to them," Lemchi says.

So far police haven't said anything about motives or suspects in either shooting incident.

It also isn't known if the crimes are connected.

With summer just two weeks away, residents' concerns about all the violence in their neighborhood are growing.

Lemchi plans to take her concerns to her 19th Ward alderwoman and other city leaders.

"I don't want to be outside and have to duck from bullets," Lemchi says. "I want a safe summer. I just might even try to get in touch with Mayor Tishaura Jones' office as well, because something needs to be done."

This is a developing story and will be updated as more information becomes available.