( 4UMF NEWS ) Two Killed In Post-Mardi Gras Parade Shooting:
A shooting after a large Mardi Gras parade in coastal Mississippi left at least two people dead on Sunday, police said.
The shooting, in Pass Christian, Miss., about 60 miles northeast of New Orleans, left at least four others hospitalized, WLOX-TV reported.
About 200 people scattered at the sounds of gunshots, the Sun Herald reported. An estimated 50,000 people had turned out earlier for the annual St. Paul Carnival Association Mardi Gras parade, the largest since Hurricane Katrina, the newspaper reported. The parade is typically one of the largest in South Mississippi leading up to Fat Tuesday celebrations, it said.
The shooting resulted in what Police Chief Tim Hendricks called “chaos.”
Harrison County Coroner Gary Hargrove identified the victims as 29-year-old Carlos Bates of Gulfport, Miss., and 43-year-old Isaiah Major III of Bay St. Louis, Miss.
Police received a call about a fight shortly after the last parade unit completed the route, and officers learned shots had been fired, Hendricks told the Sun Herald. Celeste Plaisance told the newspaper, “I think I heard 12 shots fired. We thought it was fireworks at first.” She said that when she saw someone had been shot and people were running away, she ran into her mother’s house.
The bodies, covered in yellow sheets, were near her mother’s steps. Police drove through the yard to avoid disturbing police crime scene tape set up to keep bystanders away, she said.
The shootings occurred a day after parade accidents in south Louisiana injured a man and a woman. Police in Lafayette, La., said a man fell from the top level of a float during a Mardi Gras parade there.
A float also hit a pedestrian during the Spanish Town parade, Baton Rouge, La., EMS spokesman Mike Chustz told The Advocate.