Police in New Orleans released video footage Monday of a suspected gunman in the New Orleans parade shooting that occurred on Mother’s Day. The video, which was posted to YouTube May 13, shows a man apparently extending his arm (with something in his hand) as he steps into the edge of a crowd of paraders, then running away as the crowd breaks apart with people running and falling. Police allege the man is one of at least three suspected shooters at the second line event.
Yahoo News reported May 13 that police are searching for an alleged gunman who appears to be shooting into a crowd estimated to be about 200 strong. As is noted from the video, surveillance footage taken from a street camera, the suspect was wearing a white t-shirt and pants and has been described as a young African American aged approximately 18-22 years.
New Orleans Police believe there were three different individuals shooting into the second line paraders. Second line events are sometimes organized, sometimes impromptu parades that occur almost every Sunday and are a traditional offshoot of the famed New Orleans street funeral processions. Police that were on-hand during the parade saw three people run from the area when shots were fired.
However, getting eye-witnesses to what happened has been a little more difficult. Still, to hopefully get people to cooperate, Crimestoppers has doubled their normal reward for information leading to an arrest to $5,000. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms matched the sum.
The shootings occurred at 1:47 p.m. (CST). As soon as the shots were fired, people scattered.
But 19 people were hit by flying bullets, many from ricochets, according to police reports. Two of those hit — a 10-year-old boy and a 10-year-old girl — both survived with grazings. And although authorities announced “most of the wounds were not life-threatening” and nobody was killed in the incident, USA Today reported that an LSU Public Hospital spokesperson stated that three of those shot were still listed in critical condition Monday. One was listed in stable condition.
Another, more choppy video showing some of the chaos during the shooting was posted online as well.
New Orleans mayor Mitch Landrieu said the second line shooting was the third parade related shooting in New Orleans this year, according to CNN. A Martin Luther King Day parade on January 21 saw five people wounded, and four people were hurt in a February Mardi Gras attack.
Police Superintendent Ronal Serpas said Monday, “I can assure whoever did this, we know a lot more about you than you think we do. And my recommendation to you is to collect yourself, and turn yourself in.”
But there is some concern that the shootings might have been gang related, coming as they did nearly a month after the high-profile announcement of indictments on five New Orleans gang members. When asked about a connection, Mayor Landrieu said it was too soon to tell but authorities would know more as more information became available.
“It’s a culture of violence that has enveloped this city for a long period of time … and it’s one of the things that we as a community have got to stop,” the mayor said.