By Bruce Shipkowski Associated Press
TRENTON, N.J. — Body camera footage from officers responding to a shooting at a New Jersey all-night arts festival shows police telling people to go home shortly before shots rang out, sending people scrambling.
The footage released by the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office shows festivalgoers seeking safety as gunfire erupted and wounded people seeking help in the chaotic aftermath at the historic Roebling Wire Works Building, a former factory that once supplied cables for bridges, including the Golden Gate.
The agency also released 911 calls about the June 17 shooting that left a suspect dead and nearly two dozen people injured. The 17 people treated for gunshot wounds included a 13-year-old boy and another suspect.
About 1,000 people were attending the Art All Night Trenton festival when the gunfire erupted in the early morning hours of June 17. The event showcases local art, music, food and films.
Authorities have said several neighborhood gangs had a dispute, and multiple suspects began shooting at each other, with police returning fire.
The released footage begins as police were trying to shut down the festival only halfway in. One officer can be heard saying “Go home, folks! It’s over,” shortly before the shooting starts.
Police said they had been planning on shutting down the event early because several fights had broken out.
At one point, an officer can be seen on video angrily ordering an attendee to stop taking photographs of the frantic scene in the warehouse, where artwork lined the walls. A man is soon seen running up to police screaming: “My boy got hit! My boy got hit!” An officer tells him “Get him on the ground. Put pressure on him.”
The footage later shows several officers helping a man who had been shot multiple times until the paramedics arrive.
“Stay with us, big guy. Stay with us,” they can be heard saying to the victim.
Another officer who drove a shooting victim to a hospital is seen there yelling for help. As staffers rush to get the wounded man inside, the officer warns them there will be many more injured people