Bullet fragments that hit 5 A's fans likely came from within 1 mile of Coliseum, OPD says

ByJ.R. Stone and Leslie Brinkley via KGO logo
Wednesday, July 6, 2022
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Oakland police say five fans inside the A's Coliseum were struck by bullet fragments from celebratory gunfire occurring throughout the city.

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- Oakland police say they located five Athletics' fans at the Coliseum struck by bullet fragments from what appeared to be celebratory gunfire occurring throughout the city.

"These appear to be bullet fragments that may have come from guns being fired in another location," said Oakland Police Chief LeRonne Armstrong who continued saying, "as far as a mile away where those bullets could have been fired from."

Monday night's fireworks show was the biggest home crowd of the year for the Fourth of July Athletics' game at the Coliseum with 24,000 fans. Once the A's won, the fireworks began. So did the gunfire.

But police believe the bullets were fired from outside of the coliseum and then rained down on fans inside.

One victim was an 11-year-old shot in the shoulder. The other bullets hit fans in the arms and hands. Everyone was treated and released.

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Longtime Bay Area radio host Chuy Gomez threw out the first pitch and stayed through the game and the fireworks show. He said he didn't even realize gunshots had been fired when he was there.

"It's crazy cause when I got home I got a text from my friend saying, 'are you safe?' And I'm like what do you mean? Well apparently there was a shooting. Well everything was nice and peaceful when I was there," said Gomez.

The bullets were fired as hundreds of illegal fireworks were set off throughout the city. Oakland city council member Noel Gallo says this has to change.

"You know we've got to change our behavior here in the City of Oakland. Not only did I hear the loud M80s and the fireworks but I also heard the gunshots going off. I can just hear the Oakland As, this is why we don't want the Coliseum but the reality is it all comes down to enforcement," Oakland city council member Noel Gallo said.

Gallo was dismayed that so many residents spent hundreds of dollars on fireworks and then set them off illegally and that so many fired weapons off endangering the public even more. A car in the coliseum parking lot was also pierced by a bullet, but no one was injured.

Officers found no shell casings in the coliseum or in the parking lot of the facility. They believe the shots that hit people came from a high powered rifle within a mile of the location.

"Fourth of July I know people like to shoot up in the air so in that sense less surprising, still horrible," said A's season ticket holder Amy Kimball.

"Not just in Oakland anywhere. People fire off their guns because they don't have fireworks, okay those bullets have to come down eventually somewhere," said Gomez.

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Gunfire also erupted in other parts of the city over the holiday weekend, including a 3-year-old boy who's critically injured after being shot and a person found dead in a car after about 100 shots fired. A sideshow involving about 200 vehicles was also broken up by police, Chief Armstrong said.

Oakland police say they'll work closely with the A's security to ensure the safety of fans attending future home games.

The Oakland Police Department and Crime Stoppers of Oakland are offering a reward up to $20,000 for information leading to an arrest or arrests in the case. Anyone with information is encouraged to contact the OPD Felony Assault Unit at (510) 238-3426.

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