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2 Bloomington-Normal men wanted in connection with Labor Day weekend shooting

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BLOOMINGTON — Two men are wanted in connection to the Labor Day weekend shooting in Bloomington, authorities said Thursday.

James “Smooda” Fields, 23, of Bloomington and Byron Gardner Jr., 24, of Normal are wanted on McLean County warrants.

Fields, described as 5 feet 10 inches tall and weighing 200 pounds, is accused of two counts of aggravated discharge of a firearm, unlawful use of a weapon, aggravated unlawful use of a weapon and unlawful possession of a firearm without a valid firearm owners identification card or concealed carry license.

James Fields

Fields

According to Bloomington police, he is accused of firing at an occupied vehicle during the Sept. 5 incident in the area of the 700 block of West Mill Street.

Gardner is described as 5 feet 7 inches, weighing 210 pounds. He is accused of aggravated discharge of a firearm and aggravated unlawful use of a weapon without a valid firearm owners identification card or concealed carry license.

Byron Gardner

Gardner

Police say he also fired at an occupied vehicle.

Anyone with information on Fields and Gardner are asked to contact Detective Tom Rena at (309) 434-2587 or trena@cityblm.org. To remain anonymous, call Crime Stoppers of McLean County at (309)828-1111.

Both suspects are presumed to be armed and dangerous. Civilians are advised not to approach them.

Their bonds were set at the time of the warrants at $300,000 with 10% to apply for each of them.

A third person accused in this shooting was charged last week. Amari Buchanon, 23, is charged with two counts of aggravated discharge of a firearm and one count of aggravated unlawful use of a weapon.

During her custody hearing, prosecutors said she owned the vehicle that witnesses said was believed to be the source of the gunfire that struck another vehicle in the area of the 700 block of West Mill Street on Sept. 5. She was identified as a passenger in the vehicle at the time of the shooting.

Prosecutors also said the investigation indicated Buchanon likely did not fire the shots, but it is still unclear who, from those in the vehicle, did.

No injuries were reported from the shooting incident.


The latest Crime Stoppers of McLean County cases

Contact Kelsey Watznauer at (309) 820-3254. Follow her on Twitter: @kwatznauer.

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