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'Not the Nashville that I know' East Nashville on edge after deadly crime spree

FOX 17 News/Metro Police photos

Three people are dead and Metro Police are investigating a possible connection between a series of apparently random shootings in the Nashville area.

The shootings happened in the East Nashville and Madison areas starting in mid-August. The crimes all appear to be random robbery attempts.

MNPD Spokesman Don Aaron called East Nashville and Madison shootings "senseless cold-blooded homicides."

In each case, the suspects are described as two people who fled in a dark sedan, identified in one shooting as a Chevy. No arrests have been made and police are asking for the community's help to bring the killers to justice.

"It's just a huge coordinated effort to bring these killers to justice," a Metro officer said during a news conference.

Officers are asking anyone who sees something or hears something, even if it's third-hand, to call Crime Stoppers.

"We know that Nashville wants to join with the police department in getting these two killers off the streets," an officer said.

Shootings:

In East Nashville, a man and woman died Friday morning, Aug. 17, after being shot outside “The Cobra,” a bar along Gallatin Avenue.

Witnesses tell police the shooting happened during an apparent robbery at about 3:30 a.m.

The victims have been identified as Bartley Teal, 33, and Jaime Sarrantonio, 30. Friday was Teal's 33rd birthday.

The suspects are described as two black men, at least one with dreads, who fled in a later model small Chevy car.

Police say after the shooting, the murderers fled to North Nashville and dumped the victims' belongings in an obscure alley off 23rd Avenue North and Heiman Street. The belongings have been recovered and are being processed at MNPD Crime Laboratory.

Anyone with information should call 615-742-7463.

In Madison, someone shot a man to death with a rifle while he was walking to catch a bus to go to work.

Kendall Rice, 31, was killed at about 5:05 a.m. Tuesday morning, Aug. 14, in the Alta Loma Road area of Madison.

Police say at the time, Rice was walking from his home along Crestview Drive to catch a bus on North Gallatin Road when a car pulled up behind him. Witnesses reported two men shot Rice and fled.

Rice died at the scene. His personal belongings were missing.

The suspects are described as two black men in their 30s who fled in a dark-colored sedan.

Also in Madison about 12 minutes after the deadly shooting, a man was critically shot at Falcon View Apartments.

In East Nashville, a woman was shot while walking her dog on Aug. 8.

Meanwhile, Goodlettsville Police are also investigating after a man claimed two men, armed with a rifle, tried to rob him at 4:45 a.m. the same day at Rivergate Meadows Apartments.


Nashville residents speak out

Ryan Noble loves going out with his friends to bars in East Nashville, but their gun turned violent Thursday morning after he says two men robbed he and his friends then pistol whipped him.

"I threw my wallet. Next thing I know, I'm holding my fact," Noble said. "I was pistol whipped."

Noble and his friends are not the only victims in this week's crime spree. Now, he said he feels unsafe in his neighborhood.

"I can’t walk to Kroger. I don’t feel safe walking to Kroger or to the new bar or taking my dog for a walk,” said Noble.

Police believe some of the crimes in the East Nashville area could be connected, a frightening thought for resident Sam McCullough.

“I’ve lived in Nashville all my life. I’ve never woken up every morning to see two people shot, one person dead, three people dead. Cars hijacked," McCullough said. "It's not the Nashville that I know anymore. I don't know what happened."


This is a developing news story and will be updated.

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