Sunday, May 12, 2013
New Orleans police were looking for three suspects tonight after someone opened fire at a Mother's Day parade, wounding as many as 19 people, including a 10-year-old boy and a 10-year-old girl.
The shooting occurred at approximately 1:47 p.m., during a Second Line Parade, according to the New Orleans Police Department.
In addition to the two children, 10 men and seven women were wounded in the shooting, police said.
The two 10-year-olds had graze wounds to the body and were in good condition, police said. A man and a woman were in surgery this even as a result of their wounds.
Many of the victims were grazed, and no one was killed. Most of the wounds were not life-threatening, police said.
Mary Beth Romig, a spokeswoman for the FBI in New Orleans, described the shooting as "strictly an act of street violence in New Orleans," and said there was no indication it was an act of terrorism.
The the Original Big 7 Second Line parade started at around 1 p.m. with a full contingent of police officers. When the end of the parade reached North Villere and Frenchmen Street at about 1:47 p.m., shots were fired with different guns.
"It appears that these two or three people just for a reason unknown to us started shooting at towards or in the crowd," Police Superintendent Ronal Serpas said. "It was over in just a couple seconds."
ABC's Darian Trotter was participating in the Mother's Day Second Line when the shooting began.
"It took a second before I realized, OK I should run," Trotter said. "And, I ran and I went between two homes and jumped the fence and was in someone's back yard. And after a while you kind of realize it's OK to come out and you heard the loud screaming and yelling from grown men who obviously had been struck and women. It was just really chaotic."
Three suspects were seen running from the scene after the shooting, police said.
One suspect was described as an African-American male approximately 18-to-22-years-old, wearing a white T-shirt and blue jean shorts.
At a news conference outside one of the hospitals where victims were taken, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu asked the public for help finding the shooters.
"These kinds of incidents will not go unanswered. Somebody knows something," he said. "The way to stop this violence is for you all to help."
Though police said they were not sure whether certain individuals were targeted or whether it was a random shooting, they expressed confidence the suspects would be caught.
"We'll get them. We have good resources in this neighborhood," Serpas said.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.