1 Person Dead, 1 In Custody After Shooting At Site Of Breonna Taylor Protests
Updated at 6:00 p.m. ET
Authorities in Louisville, Ky., have identified the victim in a fatal Saturday night shooting in a park where demonstrators gathered to protest the police killing of Breonna Taylor.
Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer said Sunday that 27-year-old Tyler Gerth died shortly after a shooter opened fire into a group of protesters in Jefferson Square Park.
"This is absolutely not what they wanted or any of us wanted. None of us want to see this area of peaceful protest become a crime scene," Fischer said during a press conference.
The apparent shooter was also wounded and taken to a nearby hospital where he was put under police custody. Louisville Metro Police Chief Robert Schroeder told reporters that the suspect had been participating in protests for weeks.
"He had been arrested a couple times over the past several weeks. He had been repeatedly asked by other members in the park to leave due to his disruptive behavior," Schroeder said.
Authorities say the gunman opened fire at the edge of the protest around 9 p.m. Surveillance video released by authorities shows an apparent confrontation between several individuals. Shortly after that people are shown running for cover.
According to member station WFPL, graphic video posted to Facebook also appeared to show a man firing a pistol several times into the crowd of protesters.
Authorities say other people at the scene were also armed and several other shots were fired. Schroeder said homicide investigators are working to determine who else fired shots during the incident.
Jefferson County sherriff's deputies arrived at the park after shooting began, with LMPD officers arriving four minutes later. Police had earlier tweeted that deputies had attempted to perform life-saving measures on Gerth, who died at the scene.
Jefferson Square Park has been at the center of protests in the city following the police killings of Taylor and George Floyd. Taylor was at her Louisville apartment with her boyfriend, Kenneth Walker, on March 13 when police arrived to execute a warrant in the middle of the night. Walker's lawyer said he fired at police after mistaking them for robbers. Officers returned fire and Taylor was shot multiple times and later died.
The city's Metro Council voted unanimously to ban no-knock warrants following her death. The legislation was named Breonna's Law in the 26-year-old's honor.
Police cleared out multiple tents that had been set up by protesters over the weekend. City officials said that following the shooting, they plan to enforce rules forbidding overnight camping in the park in the interest of public safety.
The Saturday night shooting was not the first time protesters were injured in the city. Seven people were shot on May 28 near the same area.
LMPD also received another call Saturday about another shooting victim at the Hall of Justice, across the street from the park. An individual was transported from the Hall of Justice to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
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