Double homicide: Women shot, killed near 24th and Auer; man arrested

MILWAUKEE -- Two women were fatally shot near 24th Place and Auer Avenue Saturday night, Feb. 22. Police said a man was arrested.

It happened around 8:30 p.m.

Police said the victims were 31 and 30.

A Milwaukee man, 32, was taken into custody at the scene.

It wasn't immediately clear what might have led to the violence, but neighbors said they heard arguing, and then gunshots.

"There was a lot of commotion and arguing," said Akbar Britton, neighbor. "Then, probably after a good three or four minutes of arguing and commotion, heard shots fired."

Family identified one of the victims as Meshala Bell, described as a loving mother to a little girl -- her daughter now "left without a mother, somebody who she was stuck like glue to."

CLICK HERE to access a account set up in Bell's honor.

Amarah "Jerica" Banks, Arzel Ivery, Camaria Banks, Zaniya Ivery

Saturday's violence happened one week after an Amber Alert was issued for the children of Amarah "Jerica" Banks. Jerica Banks, Camaria Banks, 4, and Zaniya Ivery, 5 were found dead a day later in a garage near 47th Street and Burleigh Street. Arzel Ivery, Sr., Banks' boyfriend and the father of her children, was arrested, and prosecutors said he confessed to the crime to his father in Tennessee. According to prosecutors, Ivery strangled his family during an argument with Banks over the January death of their 21-month-old son, which Banks reportedly blamed Ivery for.

Javaunte Jefferson, Savannah Bailey -- 8th and Messmer arson

The discovery of Banks and her children was made two days after prosecutors said Javaunte Jefferson set Savannah Bailey, the mother of his children, on fire -- pouring gasoline on her as she slept in her home near 8th Street and Messmer Street. Bailey ran outside and rolled in the snow in an effort to extinguish the fire as her children cried outside in -1° weather. She suffered severe, life-threatening burns to 60% of her body. According to a criminal complaint, Jefferson's 8-year-old brother told investigators Jefferson told his mother he killed Bailey because she wouldn't pay her taxes, and was buying other stuff. At last check, Bailey was being treated for life-threatening injuries at the hospital.

Annie Sandifer, Lorenz

The month of February started with the fatal shooting of a pregnant woman outside Gene's Supper Club Feb. 1. Doctors delivered Annie Sandifer's baby boy, Lorenz, at the hospital. Prosecutors said Antion Haywood fired from a vehicle after spending time inside the club. Investigators used his scanned ID from the club to link him to the crime.

"It's out of control," said Ezzy Washington. "It's real crazy. Women and children getting hurt and ran over. It's just ridiculous. It's just too much. Ain't no answer for it. We can say, 'Stop the violence' until we turn blue in the face. It still goes on."

"It's just sad that we grow up in a community and a culture that where things like this, in so many ways, are pacified," said Britton.

"We're all hurt," said Pastor Ingrid Durr Russell with Chosen Generation Outreach Ministries. "When one is hurt, everyone hurts. The way out is not killing someone. The way out is talking to someone, trying to come to an understanding."

Anyone with information on the 24th and Auer double homicide was asked to call Milwaukee police or Milwaukee Crime Stoppers at 414-224-TIPS.

Other 2020 fatal shootings/violence involving women/children:

Mary Boulden

Jan. 25: Mary Boulden, 62

Boulden was fatally shot near 65th Street and Hampton Avenue as she rode in a vehicle.

Prosecutors said Orlando Cain opened fire, killing Boulden, and injuring his ex-girlfriend and her current boyfriend -- who was giving Boulden a ride.

Cain's ex had filed a restraining order against him, according to prosecutors.

Orlando Cain

Jan. 28: 50-year-old woman

Police said the woman was pronounced dead at the scene of a shooting near 28th Street and Concordia Avenue. An investigation was underway to determine what led to the violence.

Raven Coley

Feb. 4: Raven Coley, 24

Raven Coley, a mother of four children 8 and under, was fatally shot inside an apartment building near 23rd Street and Wells Street.

Prosecutors said Deonte Wilkins pulled the trigger and then told investigators a stranger broke into the apartment, shot Coley, and left. Investigators found no sign of forced entry, and a witness said she saw Wilkins holding a gun before hearing a shot.

Deonte Wilkins

Feb. 8: Jamal Anderson Jr.

5-year-old Jamal Anderson Jr. died in a shooting at the Mayfair Apartment Homes on Feb. 8.

His father, Jamal Anderson, was charged in connection with the shooting. Prosecutors said Anderson indicated two people forced their way into the apartment and shot the boy before fleeing.

However, investigators found a backpack buried in snow outside with a gun inside. When confronted with that evidence, prosecutors said Anderson changed his story, eventually admitting the gun was his.

Nyah Chatman

Feb. 8: Nyah Chatman

Chatman was fatally shot near 21st Street and Wright Street, allegedly by Luke Dorsey. A second woman required emergency surgery at the hospital after the shooting.

Prosecutors said Dorsey told investigators he’s schizophrenic and people were “out to get him.”

A witness said they were watching TV when Dorsey began pacing and acting "paranoid" before walking into the dining room. The witness then heard gunshots. Prosecutors said part of an ecstasy pill was found on him after his arrest.

Luke Dorsey

Alonzo Lamar Jr.

Jan. 1: Alonzo Lamar, 1

Alonzo Lamar Jr., known as AJ, died at a home near 25th Street at Atkinson Avenue after prosecutors said the child was left in the care of the mother's boyfriend, James Johnson, while she worked. When she got home, she found her son lifeless, and covered in bruises, along with human bite marks. It was determined he died from blunt force trauma.

Prosecutors said Johnson indicated the child fell off the bed in the basement, but investigators determined that would have been a minor fall. Johnson then admitted to biting the child, striking him in the head and punching him in the leg because he was "crying non-stop for over an hour."