3 Dead, 15 Wounded in Mass Shooting at California Garlic Festival
Three people were killed, and 15 others injured after a gunman opened fire on attendees of the California Gilroy Garlic Festival, Sunday night.
According to Fox News, a shooter opened fire into a crowd of festival-goers around 5:41 p.m. on Sunday. Police took no more than one minute to arrive on the scene, where they engaged in gunfire with the shooter, ultimately killing him.
"We had many, many officers in the park at the time that this occurred as we do any day during a festival, which accounts for the very, very quick response time," Chief of Police Scot Smithee said at a press conference Sunday evening.
Smithee noted that the gunman is believed to have entered the festival through a hole he cut in a fence surrounding the event. Some witnesses recall seeing a second suspect, but police have yet to confirm these claims.
Some witnesses also recalled the shooter being dressed in what some have described as army fatigues. A witness to the shooting – Ryan Wallace – told NBC Bay Area that the shooter appeared to be dressed similarly to the police officers. Wallace was working a rock-climbing booth at the festival that featured a rock wall for kids to climb on. When he heard the gunfire, he frantically worked to get all of the kids off of the rock wall before seeking cover.
Police have yet to publicly identify the shooter and according to NBC Bay Area, the shooter was not on law enforcement’s radar.
NBC Bay Area has, however, identified one of the three victims as 6-year-old Steven Romero. Romero’s father reportedly contacted the news outlet to confirm that his son was one of the three victims killed in the shooting. The victim’s father also shared that his wife and mother-in-law also sustained gunshots at the festival. At the time of this writing, the names and ages of the other two victims have not been released.
Police, the FBI and the ATF are all reportedly still on the scene and are actively canvassing the surrounding areas. A “long-board rifle” and shell casings have been recovered, NBC Bay Area reports, and FBI counterintelligence agents are reportedly looking into the deceased shooter to see if he had any ties with hate or terrorist groups, domestic or foreign.
President Donald Trump has been briefed on the shooting. The President confirmed this on Twitter writing, “Law Enforcement is at the scene of shootings in Gilroy, California. Reports are that shooter has not yet been apprehended. Be careful and safe!”
Law Enforcement is at the scene of shootings in Gilroy, California. Reports are that shooter has not yet been apprehended. Be careful and safe! — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 29, 2019
This is a developing story.
Photo courtesy: Pixabay