Pittsburgh mass shooting: 2 minors dead, 8 wounded in shooting at party

PITSBURG, Pennsylvania – Shots fired at a party in Pittsburgh in the early hours of Sunday left two minors dead and at least eight people injured, police said.

Hundreds of people had gathered at a short-term rental property, the “vast majority” of whom were minors, Pittsburgh Police Chief Scott Schubert told reporters at a luncheon.

Shortly after some sort of clash, gunfire erupted around 12:30 p.m. both inside and out, “and possibly beyond,” Schubert said. Shells found at the scene indicate pistols and a rifle were used and police believe there were multiple gunshots, Schubert said.

Two male victims died at the hospital, according to police, and eight other people are being treated for gunshot wounds. A police statement initially said nine people had been injured in the shooting, but Schubert revised the figures at a news conference. The names of the two young men who lost their lives were not immediately known.

George Stevens said he was outside a bar next to the rental property smoking a cigarette when he heard what he thought were fireworks and then saw the children leave.

Stevens told the Associated Press that he let three girls hide in his vehicle and call their parents as they passed bullets. He said he saw someone inside the rented property holding a gun as the children ran screaming and crying in every direction away from the building.

“It happened so fast,” he said. “It was just crazy. The kids were running everywhere.”

ShotSpotter reported that more than 90 rounds had been dropped and Schubert said “we know there were many more of these between the inside and outside of the structure”. Police were processing evidence in up to eight separate crime scenes spanning a few blocks around the rented house. Arriving police found a “very chaotic” scene with injured victims, doctors trying to treat them and people fleeing on foot and in vehicles, he said.

No arrests were reported immediately, but Schubert said “our top priority is to find out who did it and get them out of the way.” He said he could not comment on a possible motive, but denounced the number of illegal weapons and the many people who have access to them, as well as the powerful mix of alcohol, drugs and weapons.

“It’s heartbreaking; we’re here at Easter and we have a lot of families, two of whom will not see a loved one,” Schubert said. “Other things to do – how can you take a break when your child is involved in something as traumatic as this?”

Allegheny General Health reported that seven people were treated at Allegheny General Hospital and one at Jefferson Hospital for gunshot wounds or other injuries, but officials declined to disclose their condition or other information.

Neighbor Mitchell Wilston, 30, told the AP that he and his wife were not home at the time of the shooting, but before leaving they saw the neighborhood crowded, with cars parked incorrectly on the street and a line outside rented house.

“It was so obvious that there was going to be a problem – there were a number of 14-year-olds trying to get in this place,” he said. The house has been rented for bachelor parties or other events in the past or for the families of baseball players due to its proximity to the stadium, but there were no problems, he said.

In the morning, Wilston found his wife’s white car stained with blood, possibly from someone who had escaped the shooting and was trying to hide behind the vehicle, he said.

Airbnb spokesman Ben Breit confirmed that the house was rented through the company. He said the user, who was supposed to be 18 years old or older according to Airbnb rules, had been punished with a life ban. Breit’s statement said the party was held without the knowledge of the host, whose registration banned the parties and advertised an overnight noise ban.

Breit said Airbnb is working with authorities:

“We share the outrage of the Pittsburgh community about this tragic gun violence. Our hearts go out to all those affected – including loved ones, victims, injured neighbors and neighbors. Airbnb Strictly Prohibits Parties and Condemns the behavior allegedly caused this criminal armed violence.The booking visitor has been issued a life ban by Airbnb and we will look at all the legal options to hold this person accountable.

“We have contacted the Pittsburgh Police Department and Mayor Gainey’s team to offer our support in their investigation and we hope that those responsible for this bloodshed will be found soon.”

Pittsburgh Mayor Ed Gainy condemned the violence, which he attributed in part to the failure to get guns off the streets and provide adequate resources to communities. He said the city would convene a meeting with local leaders to receive feedback on a new city-wide approach to public safety.

“It is time to move on with a sense of urgency to bring justice to the victims and bring peace to our city,” said Gainey, who is in solitary confinement due to a recent exposure to COVID-19.

Associated Press reporters Ron Todd in Philadelphia and Rebecca Reynolds in Louisville, Kentucky, contributed to this report.

The video is from a previous update

Copyright © 2022 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.

Pittsburgh mass shooting: 2 minors dead, 8 wounded in shooting at party Source link Pittsburgh mass shooting: 2 minors dead, 8 wounded in shooting at party

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