At least 13 people were injured in a mass shooting in a busy entertainment district in downtown Austin, police in the Texas city said Saturday.
“I’m happy to report no one has died,” interim Austin Police Chief Joseph Chacon told reporters near the scene of the incident in the area of 400 E. 6th Street, a popular area filled with bars and restaurants.
The first call of shots fired came in at around 1:24 a.m. CT, he said, adding that the street was barricaded to keep out crowds and vehicle traffic at the time of the shooting.
“We do have two patients in critical condition,” he added. “We have a total of 11 people transported to one hospital, one was transported to a different hospital and one person reported to an urgent care clinic. So there is a total of 13 shooting victims.”
“Our officers responded very quickly,” the interim chief said. “They were able to immediately begin life-saving measures for many of these patients, including applications of tourniquets, applications of chest seals.”
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Appealing for witnesses to come forward, Chacon said the motive for the shooting was “unclear,” adding that officers were reviewing video footage of the area.
The shooter, or shooters, were not immediately apprehended.
“At this time, this appears to be an isolated incident,” Austin police said in a statement later Saturday.
The aggravated assault and homicide police units as well as a gang unit were investigating the incident, while the FBI’s terrorism task force had been notified and was also on the scene, Chacon told reporters.
The City of Austin’s Emergency Medical Services Department tweeted that personnel were clearing the area.
Austin Mayor Steve Adler thanked law enforcement, firefighters, and EMS personnel “for a quick response on Sixth Street” in a statement on Saturday morning while also alluding to a rise in gun violence in the area.
“The uptick in gun violence locally is part of a disturbing rise in gun violence across the country as we exit the pandemic,” Adler said.
Austin police and the City Council are implementing new violence prevention efforts in response to the trend, he added.
Hours earlier, authorities also responded to a shooting in a Dallas, about 195 miles northeast of Austin. Officers were called at about 4:45 p.m. CT Friday to an apartment in the city’s Pleasant Grove area.
Four adults and 4-year-old had been shot, Dallas police spokesperson Melinda Gutierrez told NBC News in an email. They were taken to area hospitals with injuries that were not life-threatening.
Police said they still don’t know what or who caused the disturbance, but they did release photos of the alleged suspect’s vehicle, a black Kia Optima with paper dealer tags that was being driven by a female, according to NBC Dallas-Fort Worth.
Joe Studley and Jay Varela contributed.