At least one person was killed and 15 others were injured as a result of a shooting at a nightclub in Cincinnati, Ohio, local police said. According to local news station WLWT, the incident occurred at the Cameo Night Club at approximately 1:00 a.m. Sunday when hundreds of people were inside the club. According to Cincinnati police chief Eliot Isaac, a “dispute” between several men is what provoked the shooting.
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“The bar was very crowded, approximately a couple hundred people,” Chief Isaac said.
“Several local men got into some type of a dispute inside the bar, and it escalated into shots being fired from several individuals.”
There is nothing to indicate that the incident was linked to terrorism, Cincinnati Mayor John Cranley said during a news conference, before adding that it doesn’t really make a difference for the victims.
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At first, the authorities indicated the presence of at least two shooters in the area, but this hasn’t been confirmed as of the time of this report.
According to Cincinnati Police Sgt. Daniel Hils, president of the Cincinnati Fraternal Order of Police Lodge No. 69, there were two factions involved in the shooting, and “for whatever reason went at each other last night and it turned to gunfire.”
“When you think of how brazen that is, there were four off-duty policemen working a detail out here in the parking lot, and it’s a very cold-hearted and cruel thing to shoot anybody to begin with, when you think about firing off a weapon in a crowded night club like this, you’re talking about a very high probability that people were shot who were not intended targets,” Hils said.
Police said several people had been able to sneak guns into the establishment.
Witnesses said the shooting caused a panic scene inside the nightclub. Speaking with a local news station, Mauricio Thompson said that he believed at least 20 shots were fired during the incident. He said there was a fight and cries for security to intervene before the first shots rang out.
“Once I got outside, people coming out bloody, gunshot wounds on them, some of their friends carrying them to the car, rushing them to the hospital,” Thompson was quoted as saying.
Robert Woods, who also witnessed the shooting, said it didn’t make any sense, and added that “it’s just not safe anymore.”
“It’s a shame you can’t go out dancing, out to the club without there always being some trouble,” he said.
“That’s the reason why I tell my kids to stay away from those clubs. It wasn’t like when I grew up. When I grew up, you could go out dancing and have a nice time and it’s over. But these days, these kids got guns and no, I don’t want my kids to have no part of that.”
Police identified Obryan Spikes, 27, as the sole fatal victim of the shooting. As previously mentioned, another 15 individuals were also shot. One of them is in an”extremely critical state,” according to Isaac.
Local media stations reported that the injured, some in critical condition and life threatening, were transferred to several hospitals in the city.
Cincinnati Police Sgt. Eric Franz informed CNN that they do not have suspects in custody but continue to interview the witnesses. He added that at the time of the shooting, two officers hired by the club for security were stationed at the entrance of the nightclub and two others in the parking lot.
In their official Twitter account, Cincinnati Police stated that the homicide unit and all available resources are being used to investigate the shooting and updates to this story will be posted to this column as they are made available.
[Featured Image by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images]