What was initially meant to be a celebration of Colorado’s legalization of recreational marijuana use quickly turned into another awful headline in a week that already had too many. As many as two suspects are wanted for a shooting that broke out at yesterday’s 4/20 festival in Denver, as two people and a dog were wounded and thousands of attendees were fleeing for their lives.
As rapper Lil Flip performed, the unknown assailant(s) opened fire and a man and woman were left with non-fatal wounds, while the man’s pet was also struck by a bullet. A third person was also grazed by one of the bullets. Fortunately, according to the AP, the people around the man were quick to assist him.
“I saw him fall, grabbing his leg,” said Travis Craig, 28, who was at the celebration, saw the shooting and said he used a belt to apply a tourniquet to the man’s leg.
“He was just screaming that he was in pain, and wanted to know where his girlfriend was. She was OK. And then the cops showed up real quick, like, less than a minute. They put him on ambulance and left.”
While the police try to find the person(s) responsible for this attack, people at the festival are adamant that the atmosphere was nothing but peaceful.
Stephanie Riedel, who traveled to the pot celebration from Pittsburgh, said she was dancing with a hula hoop when she heard pops. A man ran past her, then she said the crowd started screaming and running away. She was about 20 feet from the shooting and heard four or five shots.
“I couldn’t make sense of what it was at first,” she said. “We were all having a good time and I was in the mindframe of, we’re here at a peace gathering. I thought it some guys playing.”
Additionally, people took to social media networks to reiterate that point of peaceful celebration, including one person who claimed to be at the festival.
What angers me about the shootings yesterday is that now the news isn’t going to cover how peaceful the crowd was. Also all these anti-marijuana groups are like “see what happens? Imagine how we look as a state.”
The police don’t know why the shooting occurred but are hoping that other attendees come forward with some eyewitness accounts. And if you’re wondering what a 420 festival looks like…