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Shooting at Chiefs’ celebration

Students go from celebrating a Super Bowl victory to running for safety

​​Shots were fired today near the stage at the Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl Parade at Union Station. One fatality was confirmed by Kansas City, Mo. Police. Reports of 15-20 gunshots were heard at the time of the shooting. As of the latest news, 22 people were reported to have been shot, eleven of whom were under the age of 16. According to the Jackson County Family Court division, the two teenagers taken into custody in connection with the shooting have been charged as juveniles.

Senior Siri Gowda who attended the parade said she, and the group she was with, scattered in terror when they heard screams and witnessed everyone fleeing.

“We heard a bunch of people screaming and running in one direction. So our group of friends decided to just run inside of [Burnt End BBQ] and go to the back and hide in the bathroom,” Gowda said.

Senior Shreyas Krishnan was in Gowda’s group when the shooting occurred, and said how terrifying it was when they heard word of what was going on. He also said that many other people were hiding in the restaurant as well.

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“There were a lot of people hiding in the back. We were super scared,” Krishnan said. “A lot of us were like wondering like, ‘Who was shot like, what even happened?’”

Seniors Taylor Quinn and Ava Nichols said they were walking west on Pershing Road when they first heard the gunshots, which they thought were fireworks, and still saw the players on the stage at this time. Quinn said they kept walking until more shots were fired, and then they registered what was happening.

“We thought we had heard fireworks, but then we saw people sprinting in the opposite direction. And so we like, got really scared but then we still saw the Chiefs were still on the stage,” Quinn said. “So we were like, ‘OK, it’s fine.’ We kept walking and then like we heard more [noise], which we now know were the gunshots. So we started running and people were…pushing and trampling everyone.”

Nichols said after the first round of shots was heard and people started running, she got pushed up against a food truck by the crowd, losing sight of her friends.

“So after the first round happened, we thought it was fine. So we continued to walk where we saw everyone else walking just because we thought it was safe,” Nichols said. “[But then]…I also got like, pushed and everyone started running in the opposite direction that they previously were going and I got pushed up against a food truck. I was surrounded by these random people and didn’t see my friends.”

Nichols said that she could see people fall to the ground during the gunfire, but did not know if this was due to being shot or being trampled by the crowd.

“I saw like multiple people fall to the ground. But I didn’t see anyone like physically hurt just because I was further away. But I did see people on the ground so I don’t know if that was because they were trampled or because they were shot,” Nichols said.

There were numerous ambulances and police trying to navigate the situation, according to Quinn. She added how she and her friends encountered what appeared to be a bloody shoe with police blocking it off.

“There were multiple ambulances driving past us, police, and a really, really big gun being held by a guy in like a military uniform,” Quinn said. “We saw police passing us with their guns drawn and saw a bloody shoe blocked off by the police out in the open.”

This story was originally published on The Express and Husky Headlines on February 14, 2024.