MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — An overnight gunfight in downtown Minneapolis left dozens of bystanders in harm’s way.
Six people were wounded just after bar close in a popular area near Target Center.READ MORE: Longfellow Rising: The Rebirth Of Minneapolis' Epicenter Of Unrest
Abby Boyce, 21, said she hit the ground after she heard several gunshots as she was leaving a pizza restaurant.
“All of a sudden the guy next to me is like, ‘Get down, duck,’ and my friend and I immediately dropped our stuff and got down to ground and covered our heads,” she said.
Police say it appears an altercation on Fifth Street, between Hennepin and First avenues, escalated into a shooting.
Boyce said a bystander right beside her was shot in the foot while they were on the ground.
There were several police — up to 18 — patrolling the crowded area at the time of the shooting. Officials say the hardest part is the shooters didn’t seem to care there were police all around.
Boyce said she doesn’t get to downtown Minneapolis much from her home in Blaine.
“We just wanted to go out for a girls night out and, you know, do something,” she said. “It makes me think twice to go back downtown.”
She was getting a bite to eat after the bars closed when she and a friend walked out onto the street, not realizing they were walking into a gun fight.
“It sounded like fireworks; we didn’t even process what it was,” she said. “You heard sirens right away. People were running all over and crying. It was awful.”
She said a man next to her was shot. In all, police say six people were hurt, but no lives were lost.READ MORE: Family Shocked To Find Water In Gas Tank - And More Shocked By How It Got There
“I could’ve easily been one of those people and how awful,” Boyce said.
Nearby, police took three people into custody and recovered two guns from the scene.
City councilman Jacob Frey said the area full of bars is already a concern late at night.
“This is not the type of issue we can just throw more cops at,” he said. “We had six cops on horses, six cops on bike, six cops on foot — and that was one block alone.”
Frey and Boyce agreed that it’s going to take more than numbers to keep the area safe.
“There’s already police there, and it sounds like they don’ t have that respect for police and they don’t care,” Boyce said.
Frey is going to bring up his concerns this week at a regular public safety meeting.
In a statement, Minneapolis Mayor Betsy Hodges and Police Chief Janeé Harteau are promising a full investigation and vigorous prosecution of those who put the community at risk.
“Violent acts like last night’s shootings are abhorrent and contrary to the values we hold as a city,” Hodges said in a statement.
“Despite the heavy police presence, these individuals have a blatant disregard for human life and no fear of the consequences of their actions,” Harteau said in a statement. “I am proud of the swift and heroic actions of my officers as they responded professionally and admirably. They ran towards the gunfire and apprehended three suspects and recovered two guns.”
The names of the people hurt and arrested have not yet been released.MORE NEWS: Finding Minnesota: Bob Bell's Hockey Canes, From One Type Of Ice To Another