2 killed, 18 injured during Halloween celebrations in Tampa

News & Politics

A shooting broke out in Tampa, Florida, after two groups started fighting in the midst of hundreds of people during Halloween celebrations on Sunday. Two were killed and at least 18 people were injured during the altercation.

The shooting reportedly took place just before 3:00 a.m. around a strip of clubs and bars in the 1600 block of East 7th Avenue, according to Tampa Police Chief Lee Bercaw, per WFLX.

Bercaw stated that the incident “was a disturbance or a fight between two groups.”

“And in this fight between two groups, we had hundreds of innocent people involved that were in the way,” he added.

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Videos were posted online of the incident, where people dressed in Halloween costumes can be seen drinking and talking when shots ring out, which ultimately led to people running away to safety.

Some of those in attendance can be seen tipping tables over and taking cover behind them. Shortly after the incident, videos showed police officers tending those injured in the incident.

There were already police officers on the scene when the shooting began, but no personnel were injured during the conflict, according to the New York Post.

“We’re asking anybody that was out there that has video — and we know there are some out there cause we’ve seen them on social media — anybody that has video of this, to please report it to us,” Bercaw stated. “Call our non-emergency line at 813-231-6130.”

There was at least one individual involved in the shooting who surrendered to the authorities and taken into custody. But there is at least one other shooter who has not been caught.

“We need to hold those [responsible] accountable,” Bercaw said.

It is not clear if those involved in the shooting had been inside one of the many clubs or bars in the area before the violence broke out.

ABC News reported Tampa Mayor Jane Castor said there were at least 50 Tampa police officers on the scene following the shooting.

“Yet again, a senseless loss of life by those choosing to settle a dispute with firearms. Lives lost and others forever changed. To what end? The Tampa Police Department had 50 officers deployed in the area at the time, so this is not a law enforcement issue.”

“Bad decisions made in a split second and the proliferation of readily available guns are responsible for these almost daily incidents,” Castor wrote, describing the fatalities as “a senseless loss of life.”

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