Crowds scattered on Monday night as an active shooter disrupted Philadelphia’s July Fourth celebration, Party on the Parkway, injuring two police officers.
According to news reports, the shooting happened just after the fireworks display got underway, around 10 p.m. local time. Witnesses say the shots came from the area in front of the Art Museum, and two police officers were hit. Subsequent reports stated that the officers are in stable condition following the shooting — but no arrests have yet been made and the suspect has not been publicly identified.
🚨#BREAKING: Reports or active shooter at Ben Franklin Parkway during firework show in Philly
Right now multiple authorities are responding to a active shooter situation at Ben Franklin Parkway
during firework show in Philadelphia causing mass panic pic.twitter.com/4v521s6AfO
— R A W S A L E R T S (@rawsalerts) July 5, 2022
WATCH: Chaos erupts on the streets of Philadelphia after a shooting during a Fourth of July fireworks display. pic.twitter.com/UGelIRcdi1
— BNN Newsroom (@BNNBreaking) July 5, 2022
Action News, Philadelphia’s ABC affiliate (WPVI) reported, “Police say a Philadelphia officer assigned to highway patrol sustained a graze wound to the head. A second officer assigned to Montgomery County Bomb Squad sustained a gunshot wound to the right shoulder. That officer was there to assist Philadelphia police, as officers from surrounding counties often do during large events in the city.”
Philadelphia Police officers warned people to “avoid the area,” directing spectators who may have been separated from their friends and family in the melee to meet “at 1901 Vine Street in front of the Free Library of Philadelphia.”
For those looking to reunite with loved ones on the Parkway, please meet at 1901 Vine Street in front of the Free Library of Philadelphia. All others, please avoid the area.
— Philadelphia Police (@PhillyPolice) July 5, 2022
Monday evening’s Party on the Parkway — which included a free concert featuring Jason DeRulo, AvaMax, and Tori Kelly in addition to the fireworks display — was supposed to be the grand finale of the annual Welcome America celebration. Welcome America sixteen days of family-friendly programming that began on June 19th — in order to incorporate Juneteenth into the celebration of freedom and liberty — and ended July 4th.
According to a report from Fox News, the 2022 Welcome America celebration was the first since COVID-related lockdowns shuttered a number of large gatherings in early spring of 2020 — and some 100,000 people were expected to attend.
Pennsylvania Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta (D), who represents northern Philadelphia’s 181st District, responded to the shooting on Twitter.
“We shouldn’t have to live like this. Family after family and community after community forced to live with the gut wrenching pain of gun violence. I’m absolutely gutted by the reports of a shooting tonight in the Philadelphia Art Museum area during the July 4th concert,” he said.
We shouldn’t have to live like this. Family after family and community after community forced to live with the gut wrenching pain of gun violence.
I’m absolutely gutted by the reports of a shooting tonight in the Philadelphia Art Museum area during the July 4th concert.
— Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta (@malcolmkenyatta) July 5, 2022
The shooting comes just hours after a shooter fired on an Independence Day parade in Highland Park, Illinois, killing at least six and wounding two dozen others.