Shots fired at a house party in Pittsburgh early Sunday killed two 17-year-olds and wounded at least eight other people, police said.
Hundreds of people — the “vast majority” of them minors — had gathered at a short-term rental property when some kind of altercation occurred and shots were fired at around 12:30 a.m., Pittsburgh Police Chief Scott Schubert said at a midday news conference.
Schubert said there was gunfire both inside and outside the rental home, “and potentially back and forth.” Bullet casings found at the scene indicating handguns and one rifle were used, he said, and police believe there were multiple shooters.
Two male gunshot victims died at the hospital. The Allegheny County Medical Examiner’s Office identified them as Jaiden Brown and Mathew Steffy-Ross, both 17.
Eight people were also being treated for gunshot wounds, and others were injured trying to escape, Schubert said, including two who broke bones after jumping from windows. One victim was injured after a car was “shot up,” Schubert said.
George Stevens said he was outside a bar next door to the rental property smoking a cigarette when he heard what he thought were fireworks, then saw kids fleeing.
Stevens told The Associated Press he let three girls hide in his vehicle and call their parents as bullets flew by. He said he saw someone inside the rental property holding a gun, as young people ran screaming and crying away from the building.
“It happened so quick,” he said. “It was just crazy. Kids were running everywhere.”
ShotSpotter indicated more than 90 rounds were fired, and Schubert said “we know there was a lot more than that between inside the structure and outside.” Police were processing evidence at as many as eight separate crime scenes spanning a few blocks around the rental home. Arriving officers found a “very chaotic” scene with injured victims, medics trying to treat them and people fleeing on foot and in vehicles, he said.
No arrests were immediately reported but Schubert said “it is our top priority to find out who did this and get them off the street.” He said he couldn’t comment on a possible motive, but he decried the number of illegal guns and too many people with access to them as well as the potent mixture of alcohol, drugs and guns.