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PHILADELPHIA, Pa. (WHTM) — Two officers were shot and wounded during a July 4 event on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Philadelphia. A suspect is still at large following the Monday night shooting, which happened just after 9:45 as the fireworks display was still underway.
Videos on social media showed people fleeing the parkway where a concert was being held and fireworks began to set off.
The Philadelphia Office of Emergency Management tweeted, “There is a security incident on the Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Please follow public safety instructions and avoid area. Details to follow.”
In an overnight press conference, Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw, joined by Attorney General Josh Shapiro and Mayor Jim Kenney, said officers did not hear any shots or rounds fired.
A highway patrol member received a graze wound to the forehead with the round stopping in his hat. The second injured officer was a bomb squad task force member who received a wound to the shoulder.
Outlaw said it is too soon in the investigation to know if this was a ricochet of celebratory gunfire or an intentional shooting from long range.
“What really could have been a chaotic scene or a catastrophic scene wasn’t today, so I’m grateful for that, and I’m grateful for our personnel that were out there to get everyone else out of there safely,” Outlaw said.
As of Monday morning, no arrests had been made in the incident, but police say they are following up on several leads. The names of the injured officers have not yet been shared, but both have been treated and released from the hospital.
The incident occurred during the “Wawa Welcome America” July 4 event that included fireworks at 9:45 p.m. after a concert and “party on the parkway.”
U.S. Senator Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) tweeted that his “thoughts are with the officers and their families” after the shooting around 10 p.m.
Pennsylvania State Representative Malcolm Kenyatta (D-Philadelphia) released a statement saying he’s “absolutely gutted by the reports of a shooting tonight in the Philadelphia Art Museum area during the July 4th concert.”
The Philadelphia Police tweeted, “For those looking to reunite with loved ones on the Parkway, please meet at 1901 Vine Street in front of the Free Library of Philadelphia. All others, please avoid the area.”
The events surrounding the “security incident” are currently under investigation.