At least 20 people were shot, one fatally, in Illinois early Sunday morning, in what seems to be the latest mass shooting in the United States.
In New Jersey, 258 shooting incidents so far this year have killed 92 victims and 13 suspects, leaving 233 victims and 7 shooters injured.
In the last week alone, shootings were reported in Atlantic City, Jersey City, Newark, Egg Harbor City, Clifton, Trenton, Paterson, Bayonne, and Millville. Those incidents left five New Jersey residents dead and 11 injured.
Battalion Chief Joe Ostrander with the Illinois Tri-State Fire Protection District said the mass shooting took place about 12:30 a.m. near where a large group was gathered for a Juneteenth celebration in a strip mall parking lot that witnesses said turned violent.
Fire officials initially said at least 10 were shot but the DuPage County Sheriff’s Office said later that 20 had been shot, one fatally.
“It was supposed to be like a Juneteenth celebration; we just started hearing shooting, so we dropped down until they stopped. They just kept going. After that, we literally scattered away,” witness Markeshia Avery said.
Two of those shot are in critical condition, while others suffered what fire officials are calling “graze wounds.”
“We were all just out, and, next thing you know shots just kept going off; everybody ran, and it was chaos,” another witness said.
The victims were taken to hospitals in DuPage, Cook and Will counties.
“I saw that they had cops laid out at all the entrances like that; I just got back home. Now they got the place all taped up,” witness Kyria said.
A massive police presence remained on the scene investigating about 8 a.m., and debris could be seen covering the ground after the incident.
“We just heard gunshots; at first it was one, but then it was a whole bunch of gunshots. After then we started running like, ‘yo.’ I looked at my friend, and we took off, running like crazy,” witness Zaviar Sheikh said.