BALTIMORE – Three gunmen shot and wounded eight people including a 3-year-old girl on an east Baltimore street Saturday night, the city's police commissioner said, adding the suspects fled and that the victims were expected to survive.
The shooting erupted outside some rowhouses about 8:30 p.m. after the armed men converged on the group from different points, Davis told The Associated Press at the scene.
Davis said it was a premeditated act of retaliatory violence in response to a Labor Day weekend shooting in which a person was fatally shot and two others were wounded, including a pregnant woman. He did not immediately explain how investigators believed the shooting was linked to the earlier shooting.
Davis said the victims could have recognized the gunmen but authorities haven't immediately been able to identify the suspects and were still searching for them hours afterward.
He added that one of the armed men emerged from an alley and two others ran down the street, stopping just short of the victims before they opened fire. According to the commissioner, the 3-year-old girl and her father were standing a little bit away from the group and the child was not an intended target. Authorities tweeted that one man had a shotgun and the other two had handguns.
He said other victims were a woman and the rest were men. Aside from the girl, the ages of the victims ranged from 26 to 39 years old, according to police.
The shooting occurred just a block from where the city held a party earlier Saturday for a special event. Police said the attack was unrelated to the party in which the city dedicated a project called "Open Works," billed as an innovative work space.
Baltimore Police Spokesman T.J. Smith tweeted earlier that none of the injuries was life-threatening but he didn't elaborate further.
At the scene, police had at least three blocks cordoned off late Saturday and were keeping bystanders away as the police commissioner stood with detectives conversing at the scene.
Nearby, detectives also were seen using flashlights as they searched tall, overgrown grass in an alley near the shooting site. Police cars blocked a nearby intersection and crime scene tape cordoned off the area.