Police in New Orleans are looking for information that could help explain what happened to make a block party at Bunny Friend Park quickly turn violent on Sunday evening. Hundreds of people were gathered in the Upper Ninth Ward park for a BBQ and block party to celebrate the Nine Times Social and Pleasure Club, one of the area’s legendary second-line parade groups. The band had just begun filming an impromptu music video when two groups started firing at each other, just after 6 p.m. When the gunfire subsided, 17 people were injured. Some had multiple bullet wounds.
“At the end of the day, it’s really hard to police against a bunch of guys who decide to pull out guns and settle their disputes with 300 people between them,” Mayor Mitch Landrieu told reporters at the scene. NOPD Superintendent Michael Harrison is asking residents to tell police what they know about the incident: “What we need more than anything else is for witnesses to come forward and tell us what they saw.”
Details about the shooters are still murky, but multiple witnesses reported seeing a man with a silver machine gun fleeing the scene. Nothing else is currently known about the identities of the other shooters, but a manhunt is under way.