June 20, 2021
Several shootings and a riot occurred at Juneteenth celebrations across the country. The Juneteenth holiday, officially established on the federal level Thursday, was celebrated on Saturday.
In North Carolina, an EMS worker was shot while working at a Juneteenth rally in Raleigh. The man was reportedly responding to a child who was in need of medical assistance, according to local news station WRAL.
The first responder was reportedly walking back to the ambulance after helping the person in need when shots rang out at the celebration, striking both the man and the ambulance.
The man is in good condition at the hospital and is expected to make a full recovery.
The shooter and their motives are still unknown, but local officials do not believe that EMS workers were specifically targeted.
“It’s always a good vibe, and it always has to have a left turn because kids don’t know how to act,” Aliyah Weldon, who was at the protest when the shooting happened, told WRAL. She also said that the gunfire cast an unfortunate shadow on what was an otherwise peaceful and joyous festival. (RELATED: House Overwhelmingly Passes Bill Establishing Juneteenth As A Federal Holiday)
In Flint, Michigan, state police are investigating an officer-involved shooting that occurred during a Juneteenth parade, The Detroit News reported.
The preliminary investigation initially showed that the officer was working at a traffic point for the celebration when a car pulled up and opened fire, causing the officer to return fire and strike the suspect.
At the request of the Flint Police Department, the Michigan State Police is investigating an officer-involved shooting that occurred at approximately 2:14 p.m. in the City of Flint involving a Flint Police Officer. pic.twitter.com/WJgZIGGMhE
— MSP Bay Region (@mspbayregion) June 19, 2021
While no one else was injured, the suspected shooter, a 19-year-old female, did eventually succumb to her injuries while at the hospital, police said. The incident is still under investigation.
A celebration gave way to rioting in Long Branch, New Jersey. Hundreds of people took to the streets in a Juneteenth celebration that quickly turned violent, the Lakewood Scoop reported.
Police in full riot gear had to be dispatched to the area in order to quell the unrest. The reasoning for the riot is unknown at this time.
Additionally, a shooting in Oakland, California, left at least one person dead and several others wounded, Fox News reported.
About 1,000 people were celebrating the Juneteenth holiday when the shooting occurred, bullets struck six victims between the ages of 16 and 27, the Oakland Police said in a statement.
OPD investigating a shooting 2200/Lakeshore
6 reported shot, 1 of which is deceased.
OPD arrested 2 men w/guns. OPD Homicide Investigators will determine if the individuals are connected/responsible for this shooting.
Click link for full storyhttps://t.co/pJP2qyMMHj pic.twitter.com/cIwVmpW0mQ
— Oakland Police Dept. (@oaklandpoliceca) June 20, 2021
The department confirmed that a 22-year-old who was shot died at the hospital.
Two men, allegedly armed with guns, were arrested after running from the scene of the shooting, police said. Investigators are still trying to determine if they are the suspects pertaining to the shooting.
“Tonight, a joyous occasion at our Lake Merritt was marred by a senseless act of gun violence,” Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf said in a statement, according to the East Bay Times.
“Police in the area tended to victims and apprehended two people with firearms near the scene. The investigation is ongoing and will determine if they are connected to the shooting. Our thoughts are with the family and friends of the victims, and I want to thank our officers for a quick response.