NEW ORLEANS, (NBC News) -- Nineteen people in New Orleans, including two children, were injured on Sunday when multiple gunmen opened fire on a Mother’s Day parade, police said.
A 10-year-old male and 10-year-old female were grazed by bullets but are in good condition, New Orleans Police spokesman Garry Flot said in a statement. An adult male and female were in surgery Sunday evening, but there were no fatalities and most wounds are not life threatening, police said.
Most victims were only grazed by bullets.
Authorities saw three people running away from the scene after the shooting. At least one suspect was described as a man between ages of 18 and 22.
New Orleans Police Superintendent Ronal Serpas said there may have been as many as three shooters, and that two different types of weapons were likely used.
The victims were marching in what is known as a second line parade, common in New Orleans: A brass band plays while marching in the streets, while a “second line” of people follows the band, celebrating.
Police say the parade was just two blocks long.
“These are unusual circumstances. We have second lines which occur in the city of New Orleans virtually every weekend at this time of the year,” said Serpas. “We had a full complement of police officers. It appears that these 2 or 3 people just for a reason unknown to us, started shooting at towards, or in the crowd. It was over in just a couple seconds.”
Detectives are conducting interviews and retrieving surveillance video from around the crime scene. A spokesman for the New Orleans Police Department said he is confident swift arrests will be made.
In front of reporters late Sunday, New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu urged anyone with information about the shooting to come forward.
Second lines have been targets for violence in New Orleans in recent years. In the past, shooters have targeted a specific person in the crowd, which authorities say may have been the case Sunday as well. But Landrieu dismissed the notion of outlawing the Louisiana tradition.
“It’s not the second line that did the shooting,” he said. “The cultural events are very important to us, it’s like calling for an end to Mardi Gras because someone takes an opportunity to shoot someone during one of our parades.”
“Second lines have been with us for a long, long time,” Landrieu added. “They are an important part of our culture and our heritage.”
NEW ORLEANS (AP) -- New Orleans police say that a dozen people have been shot during a Mother's Day second-line parade.
Police Superintendent Ronal Serpas told reporters at least 12 people were shot during the parade in the city's 7th Ward.
Police say the incident happened about 2 p.m. Sunday at the intersection of Frenchmen and Villere streets.
The Times-Picayune reports there were about 200 people at the event when gunfire erupted.
Serpas told reporters the victims include a 10-year-old who sustained a minor wound. WDSU-TV reports at least four people were in surgery and others had been taken to four area hospitals.
Nobody has been arrested. It's unclear what sparked the gunfire.
Police are said to be looking for three people in connection with the attack.