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Conn. Police Link Car Pulled From Pond to Multiple Random Serial Shootings

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) -- A car pulled from a city pond was linked Wednesday to the random shootings of five people this week, police said.

No new shootings have been reported since Monday, when three men who were waiting for rides to work were shot. All five victims survived the shootings, but three remained in area hospitals Wednesday.

Witnesses and some of the victims reported that they were shot by a gunman who fired from the passenger-side window of a moving car, leading police to believe that at least two people were involved in the shootings.

State police tests on bullet shell casings found at the scenes showed the same gun was used in all five shootings, but three different cars were seen around the shooting sites.

A car that was found in a pond in Edgewood Park on Tuesday has been linked to at least one shooting, police said. A witness reported seeing the car, a black Dodge Intrepid, bring driven into the pond Monday morning, minutes after the last shooting.

The car was reported stolen from a New Haven resident, Sgt. Kevin Costin said.

Police divers were back in the pond Wednesday, looking for a gun or other evidence. Other officers used metal detectors or pawed through garbage barrels in the park. They also searched wooded areas and fields nearby.

"We're going to do a thorough search, looking for contraband, anything," Costin said.

Mayor John DeStefano Jr. said the public has given police many good tips since the police put out a call for help Monday.

State police are aiding city police with the investigation. They have been rounding up people with outstanding warrants, and have targeted street crime and car thefts, which is helping calm the city down, DeStefano said.

There also were extra police patrols in the neighborhoods where the shootings happened, which are at opposite sides of the city.

Two of the shootings occurred at about 3 a.m. Sunday in the Newhallville section of the city. Three other shootings happened within 15 minutes of one another just before 6 a.m. Monday in the Hill neighborhood.

Early Sunday morning, Gregory Jones, 18, and Chris Lowery, 20, were shot as they stood outside a house talking with friends. They were both treated and released from Yale-New Haven Hospital.

On Monday morning, Jose Rivera, 24; Robert Blake, 41; and Angel Colon were shot within 15 minutes of one another in a several-block radius.

They remained in area hospitals Wednesday.

Police had no description of a suspect.

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