Michigan police believe series of shootings in suburban town may be connected after 2 teen girls killed

Michigan police searching for suspects in shootings after Demi Galvin, 15, and Yasmeen Scott, 18, killed last week

Before August, the last homicide in Niles, Michigan, occurred in May, when a 14-year-old boy was fatally shot.

Then, a string of three shootings between Aug. 16 and Sept. 20 left four people dead – including two teenage girls who were fatally shot last week – and police believe the incidents may be connected.

"We believe all three shootings are related from what we're hearing. We don't have actually proof, but as far as we can tell, they are all related," a Niles Police Department officer told Fox News Digital.

Michigan police continue to search for suspects in the series of shootings after Demi Galvin, 15, and Yasmeen Scott, 18, were shot dead on Sept. 20. 

DETROIT MAN ACCUSED OF KILLING RADIO NEWS ANCHOR AND INJURING OTHERS WAS ‘WELCOMED’ INTO HOME BEFORE ATTACK

Demi Galvin was shot dead on Sept. 20 in Niles, Michigan.

Demi Galvin was shot dead on Sept. 20 in Niles, Michigan. (Demi Galvin/ Facebook)

"She was so close to finishing up her high school credits and she just had the purest heart out of anyone I’ve ever known," Galvin's sister, Destiny Miller, wrote on a GoFundMe page titled "Funeral Expenses for Demi Galvin." "Our mother … wanted to move the family out of our previous city to better our lives. We never [expected] something like this to happen. How exactly does one prepare for this? Our hearts are completely shattered and everyone is coping in different ways."

A GoFundMe for Scott titled "Funeral Expenses" states that the 18-year-old was an "innocent bystander in a drive by shooting."

A GoFundMe for Niles shooting victim Yasmeen Scott titled "Funeral Expenses" states that the 18-year-old was an "innocent bystander in a drive by shooting."

A GoFundMe for Niles shooting victim Yasmeen Scott titled "Funeral Expenses" states that the 18-year-old was an "innocent bystander in a drive by shooting." (Yasmeen Scott/ Facebook)

The teenagers' deaths came after the fatal shooting of Raquon Glenn, 26, on Sept. 8 and Farries Maxwell, 36, on Aug. 16.

NORTH CAROLINA DOUBLE MURDER: AUTHORITIES HUNTING FOR SUSPECT ACCUSED OF KILLING DEVIN CLARK, LYRIC WOODS

Police found 30 shell casings at the scene of the Sept. 8 shooting on Ferry Street, between 5th and 6th Streets, according to a statement from Niles Mayor Nick Shelton.

Now, Shelton is asking locals to put an end to the violence in the historical Michigan town located along the St. Joseph River.

UNSANCTIONED CAR RALLY IN WILDWOOD, NJ LEADS TO AT LEAST 2 DEATHS: REPORT

"The City of Niles has experienced tragic incidents of gun violence in recent weeks," Shelton wrote in a Sept. 21 statement. "These acts cause devastation to all involved and impact the lives of every Niles resident."

An investigation by the Niles Police Department revealed that the shootings may be connected, "and, in most cases, several witnesses to the events have been identified," Shelton said.

Niles Mayor Nick Shelton is asking locals to put an end to the violence in the historical Michigan town located along the St. Joseph River.

Niles Mayor Nick Shelton is asking locals to put an end to the violence in the historical Michigan town located along the St. Joseph River. (Google Maps)

"City of Niles [o]fficials are imploring the community to come together and share any information pertaining to these cases with law enforcement. Sharing can be difficult, especially when witnesses are recounting actions that result in death. However, it is imperative that the community work together to assist in identifying those responsible and to, hopefully, put an end to these senseless acts," the mayor continued.

The Niles officer who spoke to Fox News Digital said police believe the shootings are related because of "the people involved." Police believe the shooting on Sept. 20 was a retaliation against the Sept. 8 shooting, which they believe was a retaliation against the Aug. 16 shooting.

Republican Michigan State Rep. Brad Paquette said in a Sept. 13 statement that "there is little desire for witnesses or community members to share information pertaining to the individuals who are bringing chaos to" Niles.

Demi Galvin, 15, was just about to complete her high school credits before she was fatally shot in Niles, a family member says.

Demi Galvin, 15, was just about to complete her high school credits before she was fatally shot in Niles, a family member says. (Destiny Mille/GoFundMe)

He attributed the lack of desire to share information to "the current culture around policing and the lack of people willing to subject themselves to such a culture." 

"We have a severe shortage of officers and there are few people willing to subject themselves to such a dangerous job for the little thanks and pay it has in return. Our men and women in blue need to know we have their backs more than ever," he wrote. "Legislatively, we will be seeking to apply additional funding for our officers in relation to pay and supports, I will also specifically be advocating for Michigan border towns as they are in unique situations that require additional resources."

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP  

The Niles Police Department is working with the Berrien County Sheriff's Office and Michigan State Police to investigate the recent shootings.

Authorities are asking anyone with information to contact the Niles Police Department at 269-683-1313. Tipsters who wish to remain anonymous can also send information on TipSoft.com.