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Homicide victim lost her son to homicide four months ago

Homicide victim lost her son to homicide four months ago

WATERLOO – A Waterloo family has lost a second person to gun violence this year.

Waterloo police identified the victim of Monday night’s fatal shooting as 48-year-old Diane Martin. An autopsy determined she died of a single gunshot wound, according to police.

Diane Martin is the mother of Shavondes Martin, 22, whose body was found in an alley of South Street in May.

Police said they don’t know if Diane Martin’s slaying is connected with the death of her son.

“We don’t know if she was the target. It could be a random house shooting at this point. We don’t know if there is a connection between him being shot and her being shot,” said Maj. Joe Leibold with the Waterloo Police Department.

Shavondes Martin’s death remains unsolved.

Authorities said someone shot into Diane Martin’s home around 9:45 p.m. Monday, striking her. She was later pronounced dead at UnityPoint Health-Allen Hospital.

Police records show the Ricker Street home has been the target of gunfire in recent years.

On Nov. 1, 2014, Diane Martin was sitting in her living room at about 10:30 p.m. when she heard a single gunshot and a bullet hit the side of the house. No injuries were reported in that incident.

Then about a month later, on Dec. 9, 2014, Diane Martin called 911 after someone fired five or six shots at her home at 9:50 p.m., according to police reports. Again, no injuries were reported.

Neighbor Beverly Sanders said she knew Diane Martin as a long-time resident of the neighborhood who often had her grandchildren over.

“If I had a barbecue, I’d would go over and invite her, but she kept to herself,” Sanders said.

She said the neighborhood was once a quiet place, but gunshots are now a regular occurrence. About a month ago, she heard gunfire from a passing vehicle.

“I went to my door and I saw a truck and a car, and I thought the truck was chasing the car. … They missed,” Sanders said.

Some of the stray bullets struck the window and door of her truck, which was parked in the driveway between her house and Diane Martin’s next door.

“My mother owned the house when I was little. Now I own the house. It’s getting to be terrible, making me almost scared to go out of my own damn door,” Sanders said. “I’ll just be glad when it’s over, whatever they’re up to, whatever they are trying to prove. This was a really quiet neighborhood.”

Leibold said it still isn’t clear if the Monday night shooting at Diane Martin’s home is connected to other reports of gunfire that night, including an attack on Logan Avenue that injured Corey Dunn Jr., vehicles that were hit by bullets in the area of Linn and Gable streets and a short vehicle chase where someone threw out a gun.


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