[Warning: Potentially Triggering Content]
A mass shooting occurred Monday morning at the Fourth of July parade being held by the town of Highland Park, Illinois.
The shooting reportedly started just minutes after the parade began at about 10:00 a.m. local time in the city, which is a suburb of Chicago, according to multiple media reports.
Information from the scene coming to news reports throughout Monday has been fluid and changing, of course, but as of early Monday afternoon, police have reported that six people are dead and at least 24 more have been injured in the attack.
According to the Chicago Sun-Times, in a press conference on Monday afternoon, police reported that the shooter is not in custody. They describe the man as a white male, approximately 18 to 20 years old, “with longer black hair, a small build, and wearing a long blue T-shirt,” per People.
Cops say the shooter is still at large — and they obviously believe him to be armed and dangerous. They did note that a rifle was apparently left behind and secured at the scene. Other reports indicate a backpack or some similar items may have been left at the site, as well. Police officials say they believe the shooter attacked from a rooftop overlooking the parade route.
In a release to the media shortly after the shooting began, the City of Highland Park noted:
“Police are responding to an incident in downtown Highland Park. All 4th of July events have been canceled. Please avoid downtown Highland Park. Take shelter if in downtown HP. More information will be shared as it becomes available.”
In social media videos from the scene of the shooting, people can be seen running down the parade route and away from the sound of gunfire.
As you can see (below), parade watchers went from a feeling of jubilation and pride to one of terror as it began to dawn on them that a mass shooting was occurring at the scene:
— Ipac Instructor (@IpacInstructor) July 4, 2022
So, so scary.
One witness spoke to CNN about experiencing the horrible scene firsthand on Monday morning. Parade-goer Miles Zaremski told the news outlet (below):
“At first I heard a pop, and I thought maybe it was a backfire from one of the vehicles that had passed already, or a firecracker,” And then there were multiple pops — and having been in the service a long time ago, it was not a handgun or a rifle, it was more an AR-15 or whatever. I’d say I hear maybe, I’m guessing, about 30 pops. And there was a pause between the first set of pops and the second set of pops. And then the crowd started rushing and stampeding. … I saw blood on the sidewalk, I saw bodies that looked to be deceased. I even saw a young boy being coddled by his parents. It was sickening.”
Here is the latest on the terrible incident:
So, so scary.
Sending our condolences and thoughts during this awful situation.
[Image via Fox 32 Chicago/YouTube]