Police search Southwest Philadelphia's 'most wanted'

- Police call him Southwest Philadelphia's 'most wanted.' Police all over Philadelphia are on the lookout for 31-year-old Xavier Gutierrez Mendez after his hot temper and a gun left two men critically wounded in separate shootings over the past month.

"We find him to be a very violent individual, Southwest's most wanted at this point," Southwest Detectives John Walker said.

Neighbors in the 6500 block of Belmar in Southwest Philadelphia heard the gunfire Saturday night after police say Mendez opened fire, shooting a 24-year-old old man in the head.

This man didn't want to be named, but told FOX 29 he worries for the safety of his family. 

"I'm afraid for my children. I live with my children here. I have my daughter. I have my son," he said.

Police say Mendez's short fuse and a gun led to another shooting on South 5th street in South Philadelphia last month that left a 44-year-old man critically wounded. Police are concerned about officers safety, too.

"There are alerts out to all Philadelphia police, but other agencies we work with that if they come in contact use extreme caution with an individual like this," Lt. Walker said.

Police distributed his picture city wide in hopes officers will be forewarned if they come into contact with him that he's armed and dangerous. Police believe he's still in the area. One of the men who was shot remains in the hospital. The other has been released.

 

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