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UPDATE: First three homicides of the year are connected

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Posted at 4:32 PM, Jan 02, 2017
and last updated 2017-01-03 16:48:38-05

Buffalo Police are continuing to investigate three homicides that all took place New Year's Day.

Detectives are following leads and police say they were not random acts. All three cases involved individuals known to each other.

The first homicide of the year happened around 1 a.m. in the first block of Byrd Way, killing 22-year-old Xavier Wimes of Cheektowaga.

Police say Wimes is connected to the fatal shooting about five hours later on McNeeley Way. Twenty-five year-old Alvin McDowell of Buffalo was shot and killed around 6:30 a.m.

Less than four hours later, police responded to a third deadly shooting outside a home on Gold Street. The victim, 30 year-old Shanna Mason, knew the other victims, according to police.

McDowell and Mason each leave behind two children.

"I want to assure our residents that our police department is working overtime on these cases and following leads," said Mayor Byron Brown. "These incidents were not random acts and will not be tolerated. I would ask anyone that has information to call Buffalo police immediately."

Anyone with information about any of these three incidents is asked to call or text the Confidential TIPCALL Line at 847-2255.

Family and friends of McDowell and Mason have both set up GoFundMe pages to help with expenses for their children.