ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – A large fight was followed up by a barrage of gunfire in the heart of the Delmar Loop entertainment district late Saturday.
Police tell KMOX that two people were hospitalized after the shooting, taken to the hospital in a car ridden with bullet holes. A 19-year-old male was shot in the left armpit and is in critical but stable condition and a 17-year-old was shot in the left abdomen and is in stable condition.
The night of violence began at 8:30, when witnesses say a large fight involving young people broke out near the intersection of Skinker and Delmar.
Police swarmed the area. Sirens were heard across the city as officers left their posts to lend aid.
“At one point, I just heard people screaming,” Sarah Holder said as she waited to go inside a concert at the Pageant. “I was a little scared.”
Then, at 11:10, a series of a half dozen or so gunshots rang out in the parking lot of Church’s Chicken. The sidewalks were filled with people who frantically dove behind tables, chairs, bushes and signs.
“I just saw a young man shooting the gun and kind of kept my eye on him, so he didn’t turn towards me,” said Luke Olczyk, who was parked in his car and talking on the phone at the time.
KMOX’s Michael Calhoun recorded this audio while taking refuge behind a parked car:
Employees from the Pin Up Bowl, directly across the street, shouted as they ushered patrons inside for safety.
“Everyone ran inside. I ran inside,” Tom Winkler described.
In 2007, the American Planning Association named the Delmar Loop one of America’s “10 Great Streets.” It was the site of a similar large fight on April 10, 2011.
“It sucks. This is my stomping ground. This is my Loop,” Winkler lamented. “I’d just like a place to hang out without worrying about getting a stray bullet in the side of the head.”