WATCH ABOVE: Aftermath footage of shooting in New Orleans’ French Quarter.
NEW ORLEANS – One person remained in critical condition Monday after a weekend gunfight on Bourbon Street, the historic thoroughfare of nightspots that is a major destination for visitors in tourist-loving New Orleans.
Police said ten people were hit when shots rang out at about 2:45 a.m. Sunday. Five remained hospitalized at LSU Hospital. In addition to the critical patient, four were stable.
Police initially said nine people were shot but updated the number Monday afternoon, reporting that they are now counting a man who had walked into a police station in a district neighbouring the French Quarter Sunday afternoon, almost 12 hours after the shootings. The man said he had been shot on Bourbon Street that morning. He had a minor chest wound and refused medical attention.
Victims’ identities and hometowns have not been made public but police said some were not from New Orleans.
Images captured from a surveillance camera above a bar showed people running down the street in the chaos of the shooting. Police placed several views of the shootout online asking for the public’s help in identifying the two shooters.
The violence happened as New Orleans prepares for a major summer tourist event: The annual Essence Festival opens Thursday and runs through the Fourth of July weekend.
“This Essence Festival, we’re using an overtime package of about $300,000 to make sure there’s more police officers here in the French Quarter area,” police chief Ronal Serpas said Sunday. “There will be plenty of police officers visible during Essence and July Fourth.”
What sparked the shooting remained unclear. “What happened was two young men got angry at each other and shot at each other,” Serpas said.
The scene on Bourbon Street on Monday was business as usual, with music blaring from bars as tourists strolled, drinks in hand.
Associated Press reporter Kevin McGill contributed to this story.
© The Canadian Press, 2014