A trickle of blood on a barren sidewalk is the lone evidence of a shooting that claimed the life of 17-year old Desean Mcelveen on Abbotston Street in Northeast Baltimore Thursday evening.
Mylar balloons can be found 13 blocks away on Barclay Street, where a man on a bicycle died in a hail of bullets.
One of his children attends a nearby school.
"We lost three kids, who my teacher---the one I volunteer with... had in class, and I went to one of the three funerals. He went to all three. So, it's very, very sad," Sandy Waters said.
And very predictable in the sense that these shootings, like the majority of Baltimore's more than 300 homicides last year, involved shots to the head.
"62 percent of the victims had gunshots in the head,” said T.J. Smith, media relations chief of the Baltimore City Police Department. “What that tells us, a number of things. Of course, people are very violent and they want to kill their target and some of this involves 'up close and personal'. These aren't lucky shots. These aren't sniper shots. These are people right up on individuals and shooting them."
In both cases, the gunmen also fired several shots, and beginning with the bicyclist that was killed, police say there was nothing random about these targets.
"This individual who was killed last night had a gun in his waistband---a loaded 9 millimeter in his waistband at the time that he was killed,” Smith said. “The 17-year-old, what we know is, there were a number of shots fired in that situation as well and what we have so far in that case---the people who killed him intended to shoot him."
A 20-year-old in the company of the teen who died also was targeted, but survived with just a graze wound to the leg.
Through the 12th day of the year, these murders brought the homicide total to 11, which is three more than at the same time last year.