Six people were killed and 24 others hospitalized in a mass shooting at a show on July 4 in Illinois with a hunt now underway for the gunman who allegedly opened fire from a rooftop over the festivities.
A shooting broke out at the Highland Park Fourth of July Parade in downtown Highland Park about 10 minutes after Independence Day festivities began at 10 a.m. Monday morning..
Highland Park Police Chief Chris O’Neill said at a press conference before 2 p.m. that the suspect was an 18-20-year-old white man, with long black hair, a small build, and was wearing a white or blue shirt.
O’Neill said they recovered a rifle from the scene, but still considered the suspect armed and dangerous.
He urged residents to take shelter in place.
Witnesses told WGN9 that the suspect was positioned on the roof of an Uncle Dan retail store when they began shooting the display below.
City officials said earlier in a press release that police were responding to the actual shooting and urged members of the public to take shelter.
Several law enforcement agencies are searching for the suspect and have secured a perimeter around downtown Highland Park.
It was reported that one person was covered with a blanket on the ground while at least five others were seen covered in blood Chicago Sun Times.
Rep. Brad Schneider, who represents the Highland Park district, said he had heard of “loss of life.”
The Democratic congressman wrote on Twitter that the shooting took place while he and his team were gathering at the start of the show, but confirmed that they were all unharmed.
Today, a shooting hit Highland Park during the Independence Day Parade. My campaign team and I were gathering at the beginning of the show when the shooting started. My team and I are safe and secure. We are closely monitoring the situation and communicating with the mayor.
“Hearing loss of life and injury. My condolences to family and loved ones; my prayers for the injured and my community. And my commitment to doing everything I can to make our children, our towns, and our nation safer. Enough is enough!”
State Representative Bob Morgan also tweeted about the shooting, confirming “multiple” injuries.
“For those unaware, there was a shooting at the Highland Park Parade. I’m fine but there were multiple injuries.” He tweeted.
“Please stay out of the area, stay safe, and please pray for those injured.”
Footage posted on social media shows revelers and parade participants suddenly fleeing in panic as gunfire erupts in the streets.
In the widely shared TikTok video, families are seen sitting on the edge of the sidewalk watching a band walk down the road.
Suddenly a sound starts screaming “gunshots” and the show watchers start jumping off the ground.
The marching band members break into the run and take off in the direction of the parade track.
Screams are heard in the background and people flee the area as locals who had come to enjoy the family-friendly Independence Day celebrations had to seek shelter.
A local resident told News agency That she was riding in a floating motorcade when she saw people fleeing the area.
“People started saying ‘There’s a shooter, there’s a shooter, there’s a shooter,'” Debbie Glickman said.
“So we just ran. We just ran. It’s like mass chaos out there.”
Several law enforcement agencies are on site including the Illinois State Police, Highland Park Police and the Lake County Sheriff’s Office.
Illinois State Police tweeted at approximately 11.20 a.m. local time: “Illinois State Police are currently assisting Highland Park PD in an active shooting incident that occurred at Highland Park Parade.
“The public is advised to avoid the Central Ave and 2nd St. area in Highland Park.”
The Lake County Sheriff’s Office tweeted that it was; So help Highland Park Police shooting along the parade route.
We’re helping Highland Park Police shooting in the Independence Day Parade Road area. Stay out of the area – allow law enforcement and first responders to do their work,” the ministry said.
Highland Park is located about 25 miles north of Chicago.
The shooting represents the latest gun violence to tear apart a community in the United States, and comes just weeks after 21 students and teachers were killed in a mass shooting in Ovaldi, Texas, and 10 black people were killed in a mass shooting in Buffalo, New York. .