In the most recent episode of the US’s gun violence issue, a mass shooting occurred Monday night in the US city of Philadelphia that left at least four adults dead and two children injured, according to authorities.
According to Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw, those slain were all males aged 20 to 59, while the two youngsters injured were two and thirteen years old.
According to Outlaw, police apprehended the accused shooter — a 40-year-old man wearing a bulletproof vest and equipped with a rifle and a handgun — near the scene of the shooting in the city’s Kingsessing neighbourhood.
“I don’t know if he was firing the rifle at the time we were pursuing or the handgun, but yes he was actively shooting a firearm at the time our officers were pursuing,” she said.
Earlier local media reports said four people had been hurt in the shooting, but Outlaw put the number of wounded at two, both children.
Local media footage showed police had cordoned off an extensive crime scene, which Outlaw said spanned at least eight city blocks.
“We have absolutely no idea why this happened. Like I said we have this person in custody and we are doing what we can to positively identify this person,” she said.
Police said they had also apprehended a second person, who they believe returned fire against the shooter.
“At some point as victims were being shot, we have another person that we believe acquired a gun somehow… and returned fire in the direction of the shooter that we have in custody,” said Outlaw.
Monday’s shooting was at least the 341st that the United States has seen this year, according to the Gun Violence Archive (GVA), with at least 21,696 people killed — including 12,144 suicides — so far this year.
The GVA defines a “mass shooting” as a gun-related incident in which at least four or more people are wounded or killed.
Last year, at least 44,357 people were killed in gun violence in the United States, more than half of which were suicides.
Over the weekend, two people were killed and 28 wounded in a shooting at a block party in the eastern city of Baltimore.