Five Teenagers Shot, One Critically, at Maryland Park on High School Senior Skip Day

Five teens shot at "senior skip day" event in Maryland park, raising concerns about youth safety and gun violence in the US.

Emmanuel Abara Benson
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Five Teenagers Shot, One Critically, at Maryland Park on High School Senior Skip Day

Five Teenagers Shot, One Critically, at Maryland Park on High School Senior Skip Day

Five male teenagers aged 16 to 18 were wounded, with one in critical condition, in a shooting at Schrom Hills Park in Greenbelt, Maryland on Friday afternoon. The incident occurred when hundreds of high school students had gathered at the park for a "senior skip day" event.

Police responded to the park around 2:30 p.m. after hearing multiple gunshots near a pavilion where the teenagers had been engaged in a water gun fight, an annual tradition in the area. Upon arrival, officers found the five injured individuals, who were all taken to nearby hospitals for treatment. The critically injured victim was airlifted to a hospital.

Greenbelt Police Chief Richard Bowers stated that the park was crowded with an estimated 500 to 600 students when the shooting occurred. Investigators believe there was a single shooter who fled the scene with the crowd. No arrests had been made as of late Friday afternoon.

Why this matters: The shooting at a park filled with hundreds of high school students raises concerns about the safety of young people gathering for celebratory events. It also highlights the ongoing issue of gun violence affecting communities across the United States.

Earlier in the day, Bowie Police and Prince George's County Police had dispersed a group of around 600 people who had planned a water gun fight in the area. The students then reconvened at Schrom Hills Park, where the shooting took place.

Chief Bowers described the incident as "a horrible, tragic, senseless act" and called for unity to prevent such occurrences in the future. "This is chronic in our society, and we've got to find a way to stop it," he said.

The motive for the shooting remains unclear, and authorities are still investigating the incident, including reviewing body cam footage, to piece together the events leading up to the shooting. They are asking anyone with information to come forward to help identify the suspect.

Greenbelt Mayor Emmett Jordan expressed shock and dismay over the shooting, stating, "It's really disheartening that young people can't gather and have a good time without this nonsense happening." The incident has left the community shaken and searching for answers as to how such a senseless act of violence could occur during what was meant to be a day of celebration for the high school seniors.

Key Takeaways

  • 5 male teens aged 16-18 were shot at Schrom Hills Park in Greenbelt, MD
  • The shooting occurred during the "senior skip day" event with 500-600 students
  • 1 victim was in critical condition after the shooter fled the scene
  • Police investigating motive, reviewing body cam footage for leads
  • The incident leaves community shaken, raises concerns about youth safety