This is truly horrific and what’s worse, no one knows how many gunmen there were, how many shots were fired, or where the shots came from.
The event was an annual unofficial Mother’s Day parade hosted by a group known as the Original Big 7 Social Aid and Pleasure Club. About 200 people were participating when the shots rang out.
Shots fired during an informal Mother’s Day afternoon parade in New Orleans injured 17 people, a police spokeswoman said Sunday.
One of the injured was a girl 9 or 10 years old, who was grazed by a bullet to her side, said Remi Braden, director of public affairs for the New Orleans Police Department.
She said there were no fatalities and “most of the wounds are not life-threatening.”
The shots were fired around 2 p.m. in the area of North Villere and Frenchmen Streets during what is locally referred to as “a second-line parade,” Braden said.
The Times-Picayune newspaper said there were about 200 people at the event when gunfire erupted. Police Superintendent Ronal Serpas told reporters at the scene that at least 12 people were shot, Associated Press reported. Bradon said later that “we believe 17 people were wounded,” either while participating or observing the parade.
Second-line parades is a local term for loose processions in which people dance down the street, often following behind a brass band. They can be impromptu or planned and are sometimes described as moving block parties.
Shermaine Tyler, 32, who lives nearby, told the Times-Picayune that a man collapsed onto her after being shot.
“Me and mom were going to the second line. I told her I didn’t want to go because there are always shots at a second line,” Tyler said. “And the second I heard shots, I heard shots fired, we ran outside and one man fell in my lap who had been shot.”
Braden said detectives were interviewing witnesses and seeking surveillance video in the area.
“This is an extremely unusual occurrence, and we’re confident that we will make swift arrests,” Braden said.
Officers were interspersed with the marchers, which is routine for such events. Serpas said police saw three suspects running from the scene.
Not a day for this to happen, that’s for sure.