A new “mass shootout” hit the United States Sunday night, killing four young men and wounding six others at a family reunion at a Fresno town hall.
According to the first elements of the investigation, one or more suspects entered a residence where some 35 people, including children, gathered to watch a football game during “a family reunion,” told reporters. Michael Reid, Fresno Police Officer.
The attacker or attackers then “opened fire in the garden, where most people were, shooting ten of them,” he said.
Three people died on-site, “all Asian men between the ages of 25 and 30”, and a fourth, who was critically ill in hospital, died of his injuries.
Six other people were slightly injured and their days are not in danger, the officer said.
The perpetrator (s), who is still unidentified, are on the run and investigators are trying to trace them by examining CCTV footage and interviewing the many neighbours who gave the warning when they heard the shots, around 18 h local time Sunday.
Children and women present
“Thank God, no children were touched because there were several children and women,” but they were inside the house, said Michael Reid.
“The ten victims, whether dead or not, are all men between the ages of 20 and 35” and “all were out of the house, in the garden,” he insisted.
“We do not yet know exactly where they came from, but I think we can say, Southeast Asia or Asia,” said the Fresno police chief.
Asked by reporters about the possible motives for the crime, Reid said the investigation was focused on determining it.
He however judged “very likely that the rally was intentionally targeted, we do not yet know why”.
At this stage of the investigation, there is no indication that it may be a gang-related shooting, he said, calling the facts “absurd violence”.
A neighbour told the Fresno Bee newspaper that another house had been fired last week, causing a stir in the neighbourhood.
“I do not feel safe outside after dark,” said neighbour Choua Vang, saying he is considering moving.
The United States is regularly bereaved by such mass killings, which in turn revive the debate over the proliferation of firearms without the legislation in this area has evolved significantly.
The latest drama, last week, also touched California.
A teenager opened fire in his high school playground on his birthday, killing two comrades aged 14 and 15 and wounding three other young people near Los Angeles.
He succumbed to his injuries after shooting himself in the head just after committing his act, for which he left no explanation.