'Peaceful' DC Juneteenth Event Erupts Into Gunfire and Chaos
A Sunday gunfight at a “Juneteenth” celebration in Washington, D.C., led to the death of one 15-year-old boy and the injuries of three other individuals.
Police, as of Monday morning, are still on the hunt for those responsible for the shooting, WRC-TV reported.
The incident occurred near the 14th and U streets Northwest of the nation’s capital.
At that time, the area was the venue of “Moechella”– a free concert celebrating Juneteenth, an annual federal holiday commemorating when slaves in the South learned they were free.
The event’s organizers described it as a “peaceful demonstration” on their Instagram page. D.C. Chief of Police Robert Contee said the concert was an “unpermitted event,” WRC-TV reported.
At around 6 p.m., Contee said a separate “incident or fight” broke out, according to WTOP-TV. Police then broke up the fight and shut the concert down.
They also found weapons in the area during that time. Between 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m., two more events occurred, including the shooting.
As people made their way out of the area, some of them suffered injuries due to a stampede that ensued, WRC-TV reported.
Those who sustained injuries were then given treatment by emergency personnel.
Four people, including a 15-year-old and a police officer, were shot during this time, Contee said, USA Today reported. The juvenile victim died.
The gunfire was one-sided. There was no exchange of fire between police, the victims, other attendees and the shooter, according to WTOP-TV.
Chief Contee and city officials provide an update regarding a shooting with multiple victims shot, including an MPD officer, that occurred this evening in the area of 14th and U Street, NW. https://t.co/j2w5yXqvPZ
— DC Police Department (@DCPoliceDept) June 20, 2022
Authorities have not released the names of the dead and wounded, according to WRC-TV.
Police recovered a pistol from one of the victims, according to WTOP-TV. The recovered firearm, however, is not the gun involved in the shooting.
Police said local officials are determining what legal action to take against the event organizers, WTOP-TV reported.
“We certainly want to make sure people are held accountable when they hold unpermitted events in our city,” Contee said Sunday night, according to USA Today.
“This is one of the reasons why.”
“We have a child who was killed today at an event that did not have any proper planning,” D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser said, according to the outlet. “We need some accountability here.”
D.C. has one of the strictest gun control policies in the nation. Democrats have increasingly advocated for gun control as a means of stopping gun crime.
However, incidents like Sunday’s have shown that gun control policies on paper mean nothing when individuals are intent on breaking the law.
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