The search continues for two suspects after a woman died and eight others including three small children were hurt in a mass shooting at a party for a pregnant woman over the weekend.
Autumn Garrett, 22, of Indiana was pronounced dead at the scene of the shooting late Saturday in the 9900 block of Capstan Drive, police said in press conference Sunday.
The three children who were shot, ages 8, 6, and 2, are recovering from non-life threatening injuries at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center.
The other five victims, all adults, also are expected to recover. Two of them have serious injuries, according to a spokeswoman at University of Cincinnati Medical Center.
The woman who the party was for told FOX19 NOW Sunday morning she lost her baby. Cheyanne Willis said she was shot in the leg, treated and released from the hospital.
Colerain Townshp Police Chief Mark Denney said he could not confirm that yet as detectives continue to investigate and follow leads.
Other people were inside of the home at the time of the shooting,including children, who were not shot, he said.
“There were handguns involved, we don’t know if anyone was targeted at this time, obviously with nine people shot, we have to gather how many people were in the room at the time and figure that out during our witness statements,” Denney said.
The victims’ identities were not released.
One of them, Willis said her cousin was killed after two men wearing all black busted in the front door and opened fire.
The victims were all watching television together when they were attacked without warning, the police spokesman said.
A “gender reveal party” is a popular trend among today’s expectant parents: gathering friends and family to announce the sex of the baby.
“They were all there for a very positive reason when somebody opened fire,” Love said.
Colerain police, who are being assisted by Cincinnati police and federal authorities, towed two vehicles from the scene.
A witness called 911 and said she was sitting outside the house in her car when she saw two men in hoods enter the home, open fire and run off.
“Somebody just ran in and shot everybody in the house. There’s kids,” she told a dispatcher, according to a recording of the call released early Sunday.
At the time, eight to 10 people were inside, she estimated.
“Two guys just came in and shot people in the house,” she said. “There was little kids hurt and everything. I was sitting in my car. They just ran in and started shooting. There’s a pregnant girl here.”
Denney said police found a gun outside the home but they determined it was not used in the shooting.
Two handguns were used in the shooting, and there was no return fire, he said.
He also said he could not say how many shots were fired inside the home.
“We are just in the beginning stages of this,” Denney said. “There’s a lot more questions I can’t answer than I can.”
This is the biggest mass shooting in the Tri-State since 17 people were shot, including two men who died, at Cameo Nightclub off Kellogg Avenue in the East End early March 26.
Colerain Township Fire Department did not have enough ambulances available to take care of 9 shooting victims at once, said Battalion Chief Steve Conn.
The agency had to rely on mutual aid from neighboring departments in Forest Park, Mt. Healthy and Whitewater Township.
“We had multiple units from around the area assisting us because it quickly overwhelmed our capabilities,” Conn said.
“We have six or seven ambulances, depending on what day it is in service. At that point, we did not have enough ambulances available to take care of 9 patients.”
Overall 10 to 14 firefighter/paramedics from Colerain worked at the scene helping to remove victims, get them organized and and situated, he said. Another 10 to 12 from other departments came in.
First responders are prepared to handle mass shootings, he said, but they are always hectic and stressful.
“Unfortunately, because of the events across the country the past several years, we do train for these type of events. So we go into these types of things realizing that we can’t do it ourselves,” Conn said.
“We are going to need multiple units to assist and not just with the treatment and transport – but just with support functions. These things get quite expansive when we start talking about all the things we will need on the scene like lightning, equipment, different treatment we can provide.
“Those types of situations are very hectic. A lot of emotion, not only the fact that you have very emotional victims in various stages of shock and grief, but there’s also the emotional toll on our people coming in and seeing that and knowing we have to make some type of order out of chaos.”
Police said the victims are being cooperative in this investigation.
Police said they don’t believe there’s a direct threat to the community, but they are urging residents to remain alert and call 911 they see anything suspicious.
Police are asking anyone with information to call 513-312-COPS or CrimeStoppers at 513-352-3040.
A gofundme account has been set up for Autumn Garrett and her family.
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