DUMAS, Ark. : Officials in a small southeast Arkansas town say one guy was killed and 27 others were wounded when two persons got into a firefight during a car show that is part of a community event that is held every year.
Unrelated charges have been filed against a person who fled the scene of the Saturday evening shooting in Dumas, Arkansas, according to Arkansas State Police Col. Bill Bryant. The suspect is being interrogated in connection with the shooting, which took place about 90 miles (144 kilometers) southeast of Little Rock, Bryant said. According to Bryant, who spoke at a press conference on Sunday afternoon, "all we know at this time is that there were two guys that got into a shootout." He stated that numerous children were among the injured, with two of them being under the age of two.
Each spring, a community celebration known as Hood-Nic, which is an abbreviation for neighborhood picnic, brings together people from all around the city. Specifically, the Hood-Nic Foundation's objective is to "rebuild, reunite, and react to the needs of the young in our communities," according to its official website. As part of the fundraising event, which raised money for scholarships and school supplies, a bonfire was lit and there was a basketball contest as well as teen parties, musical performances, and a balloon release.
On its Facebook page, the Hood-Nic Foundation stated that "the objective of Hood-Nic has always been to bring the community together.""This senseless bloodshed must be put an end to." In the words of Kris Love-Keys, the foundation's chief development officer, "it's always been a family-friendly event with a message of non-violence."
According to Bryant, the gunshots claimed the life of Cameron Shaffer, 23, of Jacksonville, Arkansas, who was slain in the incident. He stated that there is no evidence to suggest that he was involved in the gunfire with police.
The governor of Texas, Asa Hutchinson, announced on Twitter earlier in the day that one of the two suspects had been taken into custody and was being jailed on unrelated charges. However, state police then stated that the guy who was arrested was being interrogated, not that he was arrested. 'As the investigation progresses, I will look into the specifics to determine whether there were any preventative measures that could have been implemented to avoid this type of catastrophe,' Hutchinson added.
According to a spokesman for the Arkansas Children's Hospital in Little Rock, six people under the age of 18 who were injured by gunshot were sent there. As of Sunday afternoon, the vast majority had been released.
Organizer Wallace McGehee told KARK that he began "running, ducking, and getting down to attempt to get kids out of the way" as soon as the bullets started whizzing around him.
Organizer Candace McKinzie told The New York Times that the shooting seemed to come out of nowhere and that she had no idea what was going on. In her words, "you went from giggling and talking and eating and everything to random fire." McKinzie stated that people began running and tripping over one another, and that older individuals were falling as a result.
Among those who were shot were McKinzie's cousin and sister, among others. She stated that both were anticipated to make a full recovery.
In a tweet, Chris Jones, a Democrat running for governor of Arkansas, stated that he had been at the event earlier Saturday, registering voters and taking pleasure in "a positive family atmosphere." "I am very grieved (and to be honest, outraged) by this catastrophe," Jones stated in a written statement.