Police Investigate Shooting in Cedar Rapids

By Dave Franzman and Jeff Raasch, Reporters

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa – Cedar Rapids police are investigating their third shooting in three weeks after a man was shot in the face Tuesday evening.

Officers responded around 9:35 p.m. to reports of a shooting in the 2000 block of Fifth Avenue SE. Before they arrived, a second 911 call came from the victim, who told police he was driving himself to St. Luke's Hospital.

Jerome L. Smallwood, 26, of Cedar Rapids, was shot once in the mouth area, police said. He told investigators he went to the area to talk to someone when he was shot. An investigation was continuing.

Smallwood's injuries were not considered life-threatening, but he was transferred to University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City, police said.

The shooting comes less than 48 hours after Raphael C. Blackwell, 22, was shot and killed outside of a strip club on the southern fringe of the city. Two 20-year-old men were wounded in a shooting on C Street SW on March 29. No arrests have been made in any of the incidents.

Crime reports in Cedar Rapids generally increase when the weather gets warmer, but Sgt. Cristy Hamblin said the gun violence is not typical compared to the past few years.

"At this point, they all appear to be unrelated, but obviously it raises concerns about the guns in the community," Hamblin said. "We ask the public to continue to be diligent...about reporting suspicious activity."
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