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6 dead, 24 injured in July 4 parade mass shooting

Six people were killed and possibly more than two dozen others wounded when a gunman started shooting from a rooftop 10 minutes after the Highland Park Fourth of July parade kicked off Monday morning, authorities said.

Shortly after noon, the Highland Park police said it remained an “active incident” and urged people to stay away. Authorities continued to hunt for the shooter, and the FBI asked that anyone who had video of the shooting or possible information about the shooter call their toll-free tipline at (800) CALL-FBI.

A Chicago Sun-Times reporter saw blankets covering three bloodied bodies and five other people wounded and bloodied near the parade’s reviewing stand.

NorthShore University Health System said 26 people were taken to Highland Park Hospital and five to Evanston Hospital, the “vast majority” being treated for gunshot wounds, though some “sustained injuries as a result of the ensuing chaos at the parade.”

Several witnesses said they heard multiple shots fired. One witness said he counted more than 20 shots.

As they fled the parade route on Central Street in downtown Highland Park, panicked parade-goers left behind chairs, baby strollers and blankets as they sought cover, not knowing just what happened. Even as people ran, a klezmer band, seemingly unaware of the gunfire, continued to play.

Police from Highland Park and several other jurisdictions, including the Illinois State Police, some armed with rifles, were patrolling the area, looking for whoever fired the shots.

“It does appear he was shooting from a roof,” said Chris Covelli of the Lake County sheriff’s office.

Highland Park police Cmdr. Christ O’Neill said that a rifle the gunman used has been recovered and that the suspect appeared to be 18 to 20 year old, white and wearing a blue T-shirt.

Editing by Omotola Oguneye