JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Multiple people were killed in a mass shooting during a video game tournament at a shopping and dining complex in downtown Jacksonville, Florida, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office said Sunday afternoon.
Preliminary reports say four people were killed of the 11 people who were shot at the Jacksonville Landing, according to a law enforcement official briefed on the incident.
The Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office said on Twitter there were “multiple” fatalities and “many” transported to hospitals. One suspect was dead at the scene, the Sheriff’s Office said, and it was not known if there was another suspect.
Memorial Hospital in Jacksonville, Florida is treating at least three patients that were involved in the gaming shooting incident, Hospital spokesman Pete Moberg tells CNN. All of the patients are in stable condition, Moberg says.
The shooting occurred at the Jacksonville Landing complex during a qualifying event for the Madden 19 Tournament at the GLHF Game Bar, according to the Twitter of CompLexity Gaming, one of the gaming teams.
The Landing is an open-air marketplace with stores, bars and restaurants in downtown Jacksonville along the St. Johns River.
On an online stream of the Madden event posted to the website Twitch, several loud gunshots can be heard and the game abruptly stops.
After several gunshots, people scream and one person cries out, “Oh f**, what’d he shoot me with?” The stream did not show the shooting.
The event was the Southeastern Qualifier for the Madden NFL Championship Series for Madden NFL 18, according to the bar’s Facebook page.
“This is your chance to earn your spot in the first Major’s Live Finals happening in October 2018. Don’t hesitate to secure your spot,” the post read in part.
‘I’m still shocked’
Ryan Alemon, who came from Texas to participate in the gaming tournament, said he ducked down and ran toward the restroom when he heard the gunshots. He stayed there for about 10 minutes and then ran from the scene.
“I’m still shocked, I can hardly talk,” he said.
The sheriff’s office said many people found places to hide when the shooting started.
“We are finding many people hiding in locked areas at The Landing,” the sheriff’s office tweeted. “We ask you to stay calm, stay where you are hiding. SWAT is doing a methodical search inside The Landing. We will get to you. Please don’t come running out.”
Malik Brunson said he was at a nearby Hooters restaurant when the shooting occurred.
“All I heard was he got a gun and the shooting started. One of the man ran into Hooters with the shot wounds, they locked us in the restaurant,” he said in a social media message.
CompLexity Gaming Founder and CEO Jason Lake said one of their gamers, a 19-year-old who goes by Drini, was shot in the thumb but is going to be fine.
“He managed to escape and run down the street to a nearby gym. He’s currently cooperating with the authorities and we will be flying him out of Jacksonville as soon as we are given the green light from the officials on the ground,” Lake said.
President Donald Trump has been briefed on the situation, White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said.
Federal law enforcement officials are monitoring the situation in Jacksonville. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) is responding to the scene in Jacksonville Landing, a law enforcement source told CNN.