Christopher P. Stokes Milwaukee mass shooting gunman confesses to shooting dead five family members. Long criminal history in poverty stricken neighborhood.
A Milwaukee man is accused of gunning down five members of his own family including a 14-year-old – while sparing a toddler at the home – before calling cops to turn himself in.
Distraught friends, family and neighbors gathered outside the house in the 2800 block of North 12th Street, Milwaukee, where Christopher P. Stokes, 43 is alleged to have inflicted the mass shooting on Monday.
When officers arrived, they found the victims dead inside in what appeared to be a domestic shooting. The identities of the victims have not been revealed, but authorities said they range in age from 14-years-old to 41-years-old.
Milwaukee Police Chief Alfonso Morales said at a news conference that five people were shot and killed between the ages of 14 and 41. The suspect was arrested and the weapon recovered. pic.twitter.com/X2poJg19yJ
— Sophie Carson (@SCarson_News) April 27, 2020
Region afflicted with poverty:
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported Mayor Tom Barrett said an infant was also found inside the home and taken to a local hospital for a medical evaluations.
The child, who is believed to be 3-years-old, appeared to have been spared in the mass shooting.
‘I think that child is fine. The loss of life is something I take very seriously, and this is obviously a horrific incident in our city,’ said Barrett.
He added that the crime scene sat in a lower income neighborhood and residents in the area were under great stress in the North Division neighborhood.
‘The living conditions here-this is obviously a poor neighborhood and I don’t know how many people lived in this house,’ he said.
‘I don’t know if there was more than one family. But again, this is a stressful period and we’ll have to wait and see exactly what happened here.’
North Division has a median household income of $40,036 compared to the United State’s $60,293 figure, according to the US Census.
Poverty in the area sits at 26 percent, which is over half the national number of people in poverty.
Morales said investigators recovered a weapon and believe Stokes acted alone, adding that that there’s no threat to the public.
The man was taken into custody. A motive has not been revealed.
‘Understand, this is a very tragic event,’ Morales said.
Long criminal rap sheet including that of domestic violence and repeatedly banned owning guns:
A regard of public records reveals Stokes having a lengthy criminal record in Milwaukee County, going as far back as 1997.
He also has domestic violence convictions involving at least two separate women starting in 2002.
In 2002, Stokes was convicted of misdemeanor battery. He was sentenced to probation, ordered to attend domestic abuse counseling and prohibited from possessing firearms.
He pleaded guilty in 2007 to felony battery, felony bail jumping and felony intimidation of a witness.
He was sentenced to four and a half years in prison, prohibited from possessing firearms and ordered to complete a batterers’ intervention course.
Five years later, in 2012, he pleaded guilty to misdemeanor battery with a domestic abuse modifier, and drew 18 months in prison with another gun ban.
In 2017, he pleaded guilty to misdemeanor disorderly conduct and was sentenced to a month in jail with work-release privileges.
Due to a domestic violence conviction, Stokes has been banned from owning guns, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.
The state Department of Workforce Development filed a warrant against him in 2016 seeking $13,304 in unemployment compensation that still hasn’t been paid.
The online records don’t offer any further details. DWD spokesman Ben Jedd said such cases are confidential under state law.
Family and friends of the victims have flooded Facebook with condolences and prayers.
‘I am so sorry for your great loss,’ one person wrote. ‘I pray that God eases the pain with comfort and peace.’
Another said: ‘I’m praying for you and your family & I love pray that they get justice.’
A woman who appeared to know the victims said: ‘I’m hurt, I’m sad,I ‘m heartbroken… Never in a million years I would have thought something this tragic would involve the ones I loved….They didn’t deserve this at all.’