Juliette Linderman (Associated Press)
BALTIMORE (AP) — Authorities opened fire Monday during a holiday weekend block party in Baltimore, killing two and injuring 28, as a resident found an injured teenage girl on her doorstep. A search was conducted for the suspect who acted
Police identified the deceased as 18-year-old Aaliyah Gonzalez and 20-year-old Kailis Fagbemi. Authorities said the 28 injured victims ranged in age from 13 to 32, with more than half under the age of 18.
Charlene Bowie, 66, who lives near the shooting site, said she saw a large crowd, mostly of teenagers.
“At first they were having fun, but you know, they started drinking and it all went crazy,” she said.
Bowie said he called the police and told his 15-year-old granddaughter to come inside. Moments later, gunshots are heard and a bullet hits her air conditioner, part of which breaks off and hits her granddaughter in the back. Bowie said she didn’t hurt the girl and they were both lying on the floor.
“Then I heard a knock on the door. Boom, boom, boom, really loud. So I got down and got the door. The girl lay at my feet and was shot.” she said.
Bowie said she ran into the house to get a rag and wrapped a makeshift tourniquet around the girl’s leg.
“I just kept talking to her so she wouldn’t panic,” she said.
Bowie lost his 19-year-old son and 15-year-old grandson to gun violence in separate shootings years ago, so it was especially painful to learn that young people died in the shooting.
“It hurts so much because they haven’t started living yet. They don’t even know what life is, they don’t know. All they know is guns. All they know is that.” , it’s sad,” she said.
The circumstances leading up to the early Sunday morning shooting remained under investigation after police spent hours searching a large crime scene in the Brooklyn Homes neighborhood south of the city.
No arrests had been made by early Monday morning. Baltimore Police Chief Richard Whalley said police believed there were multiple shooters, although it wasn’t clear if the shooting was targeted or random.
“We don’t know the exact number, but we know several people were firing,” Wally said.
The event has been held for decades, but no permits were issued this year, and police didn’t know ahead of time, as they usually do, Worley said.
“Obviously the talks to deploy more resources came too late,” Worley said Monday. “By the time we got there, the incident had already happened.”
The shooting occurred during rallies around the country leading up to the 4th of July holiday. In a shooting in Kansas early Sunday morning, seven people were stomped on as they rushed out of a nightclub, and two more were hospitalized, state police said.
The violence in Baltimore occurred the same week that Baltimore federal prosecutors touted efforts to reduce violent crime in the city. Police have reported nearly 130 murders and nearly 300 shootings so far this year, down from the same period last year.
James Townes was sitting in his car when he heard gunshots and immediately started driving in search of his two children, ages 16 and 11, who were at a block party. Towns, whose 18-year-old son was shot dead two years ago, said he could only imagine other children hearing the gunshots and being in the middle of the violence. During the search, I saw the wounded on a stretcher.
Townes eventually found the children safe. “I think we held each other for about ten minutes,” he said.
“My heart goes out to these victims, their families, and the Baltimore community as they grapple with their loss,” said Gov. Wes Moore.
Several residents said police had been stationed at the block party for the past few years. This event is held each July to celebrate the neighborhood of South Baltimore, a mix of humble tenements and public housing.
Anthony Lewis, 64, said he was in the shower when the bullet pierced the window of his home and hit the bathroom wall. Another bullet pierced through a downstairs window.
Lewis said his girlfriend thought he had been shot and fell to the floor. He had considered moving out of the city, but now that plan has become more urgent.
“I have to get away from it,” he said.
In this story, the spelling of Aaliyah Gonzalez’s surname is corrected throughout.
This story corrects the number of wounded to 28 instead of 30.
Remer reported from Concord, New Hampshire. Kimberly Crucy of Nashville, Tennessee contributed to this report.
https://www.mcall.com/2023/07/04/baltimore-samaritan-who-bandaged-a-shooting-victim-from-block-party-says-all-they-know-is-guns/ Baltimore Samaritan Bandages Shooting Victim At Block Party Says ‘All They Know Is Guns’ – Wake Up Call