June 3: Police identified the man slain on May 30 as Filipe Banderas, 19.

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SAN JOSE -- A man was shot and killed near an East San Jose elementary school early Thursday, capping a violent night that saw four separate bouts of gunfire throughout the city and marking the fourth slaying this week.

The death marks the city's 20th homicide of the year. At the same point last year, 16 homicides had been recorded. San Jose has already matched the tally recorded in all of 2010 and is now on pace to surpass last year's total of 46, a 20-year high.

"We're working nonstop on each homicide," acting police Chief Larry Esquivel said. "I don't think people should panic, but they should be aware of their surroundings. We need them to be our eyes and ears to help us solve these crimes."

In response to the recent violence, the department is bolstering its police patrols this weekend and sending out special-operations units to crime hot spots in the city.

Lt. Mike Sullivan said Thursday's killing was one of four shootings from the late evening and early morning hours. The victim was not immediately identified. No injuries were reported in the other instances.

"It was a very violent night in the city," Sullivan said.

The investigation is in its early stages, but detectives believe that the victim, a man in his late teens or early 20s, was starting his day when he was shot.

"It's our sense he was going to work," Sullivan said.

At 5:21 a.m., 911 dispatchers received reports of gunshots heard in the 1300 block of Dubert Lane. Officers responded and found a male shooting victim facedown at the corner of Audubon and Santee drives, near Santee Elementary School. He died at the scene.

The school was closed for the day because of its proximity to the crime scene.

Police say no suspects have been identified. The neighborhood is no stranger to gang violence -- a 17-year-old boy was killed in a gang-related shooting on Audubon Drive in February -- but whether that played a role in Thursday's killing was not immediately clear.

Sullivan said officers Wednesday night also responded to reports of shootings at Virginia Street and Almaden Avenue downtown, Lean and Hayes avenues near Oak Grove High School and near Andrew Hill High School. Officers found either vehicles or buildings that had been struck by bullets at each site.

Thursday's shooting comes on the heels of three killings from the Memorial Day weekend. On Sunday evening, two boys ages 15 and 16 were shot and killed near Rhinehart Drive near Independence High School, reportedly at the hands of another youth on a BMX bike, according to police. A few hours later, a 20-year-old man was shot to death in South San Jose.

The four slayings this week marked another violent stretch for the month. On May 15, four people were killed in three separate incidents over a 12-hour span that included unincorporated parts of San Jose.

Police and city leaders point to a drop in gang crimes for the first five months of the year compared to the same period last year. But they're also wary about the coming summer months, which has historically been a peak season for violence, gang-related or otherwise, in the city.

Mayor Chuck Reed said the city's heralded gang prevention task force is a key component in quelling a seasonal crime surge. The Safe Summer initiative includes a battery of educational, vocational and recreational programs aimed at those at greatest risk to gang influences.

"It's been important in holding down gang violence," Reed said. "We know what to do when we have these spikes. It takes lots of community collaboration to help us deal with the problem."

Contact Robert Salonga at 408-920-5002. Follow him at Twitter.com/robertsalonga. Contact Mark Gomez at 408-920-5869. Follow him on Twitter.com/MarkMGomez.