Three people were injured in a shooting Saturday night outside Nationals Park in Washington, DC, sending baseball fans and players scrambling during a game. Shots were exchanged between two vehicles in the 1500 block of South Capitol Street SW around 9:30 p.m. Saturday, D.C. police said.
According to CNN reports, a fan outside of the stadium was one of three people wounded, according to Ashan Benedict, executive assistant chief of police for DC’s Metropolitan Police Department. Baseball goers inside the stadium reported hearing multiple loud bangs during the bottom of the 6th inning in a game between the Washington Nationals and San Diego Padres.
Two occupants of one of the vehicles later appeared at a hospital seeking treatment for gunshot wounds; they are being questioned and are known to law enforcement, Metropolitan Police Department executive assistant chief Ashan Benedict said.
A bullet grazed a fan who was crossing the street nearby as well. All three received non-life-threatening injuries and are expected to recover. D.C. police published surveillance stills of the Corolla on Sunday morning. Officials believe it to have a Virginia temporary tag and a missing hubcap on the rear driver’s side wheel. Members of the public who can identify the vehicle are asked to notify police via their tip line.
Footage posted to social media showed frightened fans — including children — scrambling for shelter, toppling tables in the bar and crowding into the Padres’ dugout. If you listen closely you can also hear the gunshots in the background of the announcer video.
Frightened Nationals fans took cover at the report of what *sounded like* shots at Nats ballpark. But staff are telling us the incident was outside the stadium, and they’re keeping everyone inside. People hid behind bar, toppled tables to hide. pic.twitter.com/bCAP2V3qyu
— Jennifer Jacobs (@JenniferJJacobs) July 18, 2021
Hope everyone is safe at Nationals park. I heard a few loud bangs and then a mass exodus. View from my roof pic.twitter.com/MA1B7z83u2
— Jalen Drummond (@jalen_drummond) July 18, 2021
Gunshots reported outside Washington, DC baseball game at Nationals Park. You can literally hear it right here. 😳 pic.twitter.com/P4GJThA6xJ
— A Blessing (@BLM_004) July 18, 2021
“We held shelter in place for approximately 10 to 15 minutes. At that time we said fans were allowed, not that they had to, but they were allowed to exit through Center Field Gates and Right Field Gates on the other side of the stadium, because MPD had let me know that it was safe enough that they could go outside, out of the gate that way,” said Fear.
The Padres led 8-4 when the game was halted. It’s set to resume at 1:05 p.m. Sunday, followed by the regularly scheduled game. Officials said fans should expect to see an increased police presence.
“Following the conclusion of the suspended game, the regularly scheduled game will begin within 25-45 minutes and will be played as a nine-inning regulation game,” the Nationals said in a statement. “Tickets and parking passes for the regularly scheduled game may be used for admission to both of (Sunday’s) games.”
San Diego Padres star Fernando Tatis Jr. posted on Twitter his appreciation for those who responded to the shooting.
Hope everyone is safe! Just keep the prayers up🙏🏾 thank you everyone that help in the front line ! God bless 🙏🏾
— Fernando Tatis Jr. (@tatis_jr) July 18, 2021
The Washington Nationals have thanked and complimented the fans in attendance for their handling of the frightening and chaotic incident.
“Dear fans, thank you. During the incident last night outside of the ballpark, you handled yourselves in a very admirable manner,” the team said Sunday morning in a statement. “You stayed calm. You helped one another. We have always known that we have the best fans in baseball.
We’re glad there were no life-threatening injuries.