At least 21 people were shot in downtown Milwaukee Friday night in three different shootings just blocks away from Fiserv Forum, where thousands of fans attended a Milwaukee Bucks’ playoff game only a few hours earlier.
Witnesses said they first heard gunshots at around 9pm, as the playoff game between the Bucks and the Boston Celtics was in its final minutes, ESPN reports.
A 29-year-old male, a 16-year-old female and a 26-year-old male were injured in that shooting, Milwaukee police later announced, and a 19-year-old was taken into custody.
The shooting sent many into a frenzy, and several fights broke out after the game, which the Celtics won 108 to 95.
Then at around 10.30pm, a 20-year-old man was shot and injured, the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reports.
By 11pm, more shots rang out on Water Street, injuring 17 people between the ages of 15 to 47. They are all expected to survive, according to WTMJ,
Ten people have since been taken into custody for that shooting, as police recovered nine guns from the scene.
It remains unclear whether the shootings were connected, as Milwaukee police have yet to release the names of the suspects and a possible motive.
Footage from the scene showed thousands of people running in every direction after shots rang out at around 11pm on Friday in Milwaukee
One witness reported a stampede following the Milwaukee Bucks game Friday night
It occurred just blocks from Game Six of the Milwaukee Bucks’ playoff series against the Boston Celtics, which the Celtics won
Footage from the scene shows thousands of people fleeing in all directions in downtown Milwaukee after the shooting began.
‘Everybody started running,’ Brittany Bergstrom, who was at a nearby restaurant told FOX 6. ‘There was a stampede, people running over the shrubs, hats, shoes on the ground, drinks spilled everywhere.’
She said her boyfriend pulled her behind a brick wall ‘and if he wouldn’t have, this outcome would be a lot different.
‘And that’s all I know, and everybody took off running and I just kept running.’
Police remained on the scene early Saturday morning, with several blocks of the downtown blocked off.
But the two shootings on Friday night were just the tip of the iceberg for Milwaukee’s crime spree on Friday.
By 9pm, FOX News reports, police had already responded to five separate shootings across the city.
Two men have now died from their wounds after shootings earlier in the afternoon, FOX 6 reports.
Anyone with information about the shootings is asked to contact Milwaukee Police at (414) 935-7360 or Crime Stoppers at (414) 224-TIPS.
Another shooting had occurred just two hours earlier, as the Bucks game was wrapping up
Police remained on the scene through Saturday morning, though 10 people have already been arrested in connection with the shooting
The shootings come amid concerns about growing violence within the city, with Alderman Robert Bauman saying he has been hearing from condominium associations over the past month or so that they are concerned about growing violence, like they saw last summer.
‘The police had told me last year, and I suspect it’s true again – everybody has a gun,’ Bauman told the Journal-Sentinel. ‘They’re outgunned.’
He raised concerns about the tailgating downtown, which he described as ‘non-bar patrons who just sit in or around their vehicles – drink, smoke and play music – and they’re armed.
‘With all that going on again, there’s no reason this would not happen again because all the same conditions exist for it to happen – guns, lawless behavior, warm weather with the magnetic effect of a Bucks game.
‘You almost have to pray for cold and rain,’ he said.
Bauman also said he had been told that police are now planning to staff up and have a large police presence downtown, but he thinks there should also be discussions about security perimeters around the entertainment districts, weapons checks and removing street parking.
‘They’re going to have to look at removing all the street parking for blocks away to prevent the tailgating from taking place,’ he claimed.