WASHINGTON — Sixteen people were injured in New Orleans late Sunday when gunshots rang out during a melee at a city playground where hundreds had gathered to film a music video, police said.
The injuries in the city's Ninth Ward neighborhood were from gunshots as well as other unspecified causes, the city's mayor and police chief said during a press conference near the scene of the violence.
They said police had been on their way to disband the impromptu gathering, which was not permitted, when two or more suspects – for unknown reasons – began shooting in the crowd.
Police chief Michael Harrison, who told reporters that the wounded were taken to three area hospitals, issued an urgent appeal for witnesses to come forward.
"This is a classic case where we need citizens' help," Harrison said.
"People know who did this, people were out here. We need them to come forward and tell us who did this so that we can bring them to justice," the police chief said.
"Innocent people were shot tonight. We're not going to stand for it."
New Orleans' Mayor Mitch Landrieu expressed outrage over the disregard for life shown by the shooters.
"This is an infuriating circumstance... that people in this city continue to threaten the lives of innocent folks that are around," Landrieu said.
"It's just insane to put the lives of this many innocent people at risk," he said.
"It's completely unnecessary and it's got to stop."—AFP