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Children among 22 shot at Kansas City Super Bowl victory rally, 1 dead: police

Click to play video: 'Several children among injured in deadly shooting at Kansas City Super Bowl victory parade'
Several children among injured in deadly shooting at Kansas City Super Bowl victory parade
WATCH: A shooting at the Super Bowl victory parade for the Kansas City Chiefs in Missouri has left at least one person dead and 22 more injured, many of whom are children. Jackson Proskow reports – Feb 14, 2024

At least one person was killed and at least 21 others were injured, including children, by gunfire in Kansas City, Mo., on Wednesday near the landmark Union Station, where a Super Bowl victory parade and celebration were taking place for the Kansas City Chiefs, police said.

Three people have been taken into custody in connection to the shooting, police said, including two people who officials said were armed when they were detained. Police said they did not know the motivation.

“I’m angry at what happened today,” Kansas City Police Chief Stacey Graves said at a press conference shortly after the shooting.

Graves said Wednesday evening the number of known victims had risen to 22, including the person killed. Of the remaining victims, police said eight had “immediately life-threatening injuries” and seven more were in life-threatening condition. The remaining six had minor injuries.

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A spokesperson for Children’s Mercy Kansas City told Global News the children’s hospital was caring for 12 patients from the rally, 11 of whom were children. Nine of the victims had gunshot wounds. Neither hospital officials or police could confirm the ages of the children patients.

Eyewitness video posted on social media platforms showed pandemonium outside the train station with dozens of uniformed police officers, weapons drawn, running into the building as scores of bystanders fled in the opposite direction. Rapid-fire gunfire was audible in footage posted online by ABC News.

Click to play video: 'Multiple shots heard as Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl victory parade ends'
Multiple shots heard as Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl victory parade ends

Graves said at the second press conference Wednesday evening the third person taken into custody was connected to video circulating online that appeared to show fans helping police detain the suspects. Graves said police were aware of the video and were investigating.

Graves said officers administered life-saving aid to the victims and commended their actions during a dangerous situation. Around 800 law enforcement officers were at the rally and parade that preceded it.

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“This is not Kansas City,” she said. “We were here for a safe celebration, and because of two bad actors or more, is why we’re standing here today.”

Police initially urged the public to clear the area within and surrounding the station, but later staged a child reunification centre inside after ensuring it was secure.

Click to play video: '‘This is not Kansas City’: Police chief confirms 1 dead, multiple injured at Super Bowl victory parade shooting'
‘This is not Kansas City’: Police chief confirms 1 dead, multiple injured at Super Bowl victory parade shooting

Shooting mars celebration

The shooting broke the celebratory mood on Valentine’s Day as Chiefs fans marked their third Super Bowl title in five seasons. The festivities were nearing their end when the shots rang out.

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NFL video from the Super Bowl celebration showed Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce on stage with quarterback Patrick Mahomes and other teammates, but Kelce’s pop superstar girlfriend, Taylor Swift, was back on tour in Australia at the time.

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“Praying for Kansas City,” Mahomes posted on X. Other Chiefs players also took to social media to send thoughts to those affected by the shooting.

Officials confirmed all Chiefs players, coaches and staff who attended the parade and rally were safe and accounted for. A Chiefs official told the Associated Press said players and coaches were on buses and returning to Arrowhead Stadium when the shooting happened.

The Kansas City Chiefs celebrate during their victory parade in Kansas City, Mo., Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2024. The Chiefs defeated the San Francisco 49ers Sunday in the NFL Super Bowl 58 football game. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel).
A person is taken to an ambulance after an incident following the Kansas City Chiefs victory parade in Kansas City, Mo., Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2024. The Chiefs defeated the San Francisco 49ers Sunday in the NFL Super Bowl 58 football game. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel).
A law enforcement officer looks around the scene following a shooting at the Kansas City Chiefs NFL football Super Bowl celebration in Kansas City, Mo., Wednesday, Feb. 14, 2024. Multiple people were injured, a fire official said.(AP Photo/Charlie Riedel).

Union Station, which once served as a major U.S. rail hub for passenger and freight traffic and now hosts a museum and Amtrak passenger rail service, was offering parking to parade spectators Wednesday.

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Missouri Gov. Mike Parson and his wife were in attendance when the shots were fired near the train station, but were safe and secure following the incident, he said in a message posted to X, thanking law enforcement for its response.

Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly was also present at the rally when the shots were fired, as was Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas who was inside Union Station at the time.

“I was there with my wife. I was there with my mother. We never would have thought that we along with Chiefs players, along with fans, hundreds of thousands of people would be forced to run for our safety today,” he told reporters at the press conference alongside Graves.

“This is absolutely a tragedy, the likes of which we would have never expected in Kansas City and the likes of which we will remember for some time.”

Click to play video: 'Kansas City Chiefs parade shooting: 3 people detained, gunshot victims rise to 22'
Kansas City Chiefs parade shooting: 3 people detained, gunshot victims rise to 22

Disbelief, condemnation

The White House said U.S. President Joe Biden was briefed on the shooting, and White House officials have been in touch with local and federal law enforcement. Lucas said he had also spoken with the White House.

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Biden said in a statement the shooting, and its proximity to the Super Bowl celebration, “cuts deep in the American soul” and called again for Congress to pass meaningful gun control legislation.

“Today’s events should move us, shock us, shame us into acting,” he said.

“Jill and I pray for those killed and injured today in Kansas City, and for our country to find the resolve to end this senseless epidemic of gun violence tearing us at the seams.”

Television reporters who were covering the parade later said they had to duck for cover. Many appeared choked up as they recounted on air the moments after the shots were fired.

“It sucks that someone had to ruin the celebration, but we are in a big city,” Kevin Sanders, 53, of Lenexa, Kansas, told the Associated Press.

Click to play video: 'Kansas City mayor on Chiefs’ Super Bowl parade shooting: ‘That’s what happens with guns’'
Kansas City mayor on Chiefs’ Super Bowl parade shooting: ‘That’s what happens with guns’

Areas that had been filled with crowds were empty after the shooting, with police and firefighters standing and talking behind an area restricted by yellow tape.

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The shooting in Kansas City came on the six-year anniversary of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., which killed 17 people and wounded 17 others. The day before marked one year since a gunman killed three students and injured five more at Michigan State University before taking his own life.

“That’s what happens with guns,” Graves said at Wednesday evening’s press conference while noting the security precautions in place for the Chiefs’ victory rally.

“There still is a risk to people. And I think that’s something that all of us who are parents, who are just regular people living each day, have to decide what we wish to do about parades, rallies, schools, movies. It seems like almost nothing is safe.”

—With additional files from Reuters and the Associated Press

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