Three dead, 15 wounded in shooting at California garlic festival

Gilroy California

GILROY, Calif. (UPI) — A gunman with a rifle killed at least three people and wounded 15 others at a California festival before being shot and killed by police, authorities said.

Gilroy Police Chief Scot Smithee said a manhunt is underway for a second suspect though it is unknown if that person also opened fire on the crowd at the Gilroy Garlic Festival some 30 miles southeast of San Jose.

Active shooter incident at garlic festival in Gilroy, CA - KGO Coverage | ABC News

“We believe there was a second individual involved in some way, we just don’t know in what way,” he said during a press conference Sunday.

Smithee said Gilroy police shot and killed the shooter within a minute of receiving reports of gunfire at the festival.

“This is one of those press conferences you never want to give in your community,” he said. “And it is the sort of nightmare you never want to live in reality but unfortunately we find ourselves in the circumstances we have to live in this today.”

Joy Alexiou, a spokeswoman for the Santa Clara County Public Health System, said 11 people suffering from gunshot wounds were transported to two hospitals, NBC News reported.

Smithee said the shooter entered the festival grounds after cutting a hole in the fence that was accessed by a nearby creek.

The motive behind the shooting was also unknown, he said.

Gilroy Mayor Roland Velasco said it was a “tragic and senseless crime.”

“I want to express my extreme shock and sadness about what happened here today,” he said.

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Meanwhile, President Donald Trump tweeted out a warning for everyone in the area to stay safe.

“Law enforcement is at the scene of shootings in Gilroy, California,” he said. “Reports are that shooter has not yet been apprehended. Be careful and safe!”



California Gov. Gavin Newsom said his office was “closely” monitoring the situation.

Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ San Francisco office said it is also investigating.

The shooting occurred during the final day of the three-day annual Gilroy Garlic Festival, began in 1979.

“The hearts of Gilroy PD and entire community go out to the victims of today’s shooting at the Garlic Festival,” the Gilroy Police Department said on Twitter. “The scene is still active.”

Reporting by Darryl Coote

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