3 shot in chaotic scene outside Minnesota State Fair: report

Three men were shot and another woman was hit by a car in a chaotic scene outside the main gate of the Minnesota State Fair Monday evening, police said.

A 19-year-old woman was struck by a car outside the fairgrounds in St. Paul, Minn., at around 10:00 p.m., the St. Paul Police Department said in a press release.

Responding officers said they found the woman lying in the street, breathing but unresponsive. She was rushed to Regions Hospital, where she remained in critical condition as of Tuesday morning, the press release said.

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The driver initially stopped but left the scene when a crowd began punching and kicking the car. He drove a short distance away, pulled over and called 911, police said. Authorities said they do not believe the driver was impaired and he is cooperating with police.

As police investigated the crash site, several gun shots rang out about a block away, causing crowds of departing fairgoers to scramble from the scene. Officers ran toward the gunfire and found a man with a gunshot wound. He was rushed to Regions Hospital. Two more men arrived to hospitals with gunshot wounds later that evening — one to Regions Hospital, another to United Hospital.

“Everybody was put at risk. Several shots were fired,” St. Paul Police spokesman Steve Linders told Minneapolis' Star Tribune. “We’re lucky more people weren’t injured or killed.”

The Minnesota State Fair announced that it celebrated a record crowd of more than 250,000 visitors Monday. Linders told the Star Tribune that the three men all suffered non-life threatening injuries and are expected to survive. No arrests have been made, as the investigation continues. He said it is too early to tell if the pedestrian crash and the subsequent shooting were related.

One 20-year-old man suffered a shot to the stomach or groin. Another 20-year-old man suffered a shot in the hand and an 18-year-old man was shot in the shoulder, Linders said. Regions Hospital was temporarily put on lockdown early Tuesday after a fight broke out between family members of at least one of the men shot, the Star Tribune reported.

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Linders added that before the crash and the shooting, police had been investigating St. Paul’s fifteenth homicide of the year at a home located just seven miles away from the fairgrounds. A man suffered a gunshot wound to the stomach and was rushed to the hospital and died around 9 p.m.