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Mardi Gras Shooting: Four people wounded on New Orleans' Bourbon Street during countdown celebration

From a security tower above the Mardi Gras crowds, NOPD officers watch the 400 and 500 blocks of Bourbon Street after four people were shot around 9:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9, 2013. (AP Photo/The Times-Picayune, Naomi Martin) Naomi Martin

From a white security tower overlooking Bourbon Street, New Orleans police eyed the pre-Mardi Gras crowds after four people were shot on Saturday, Feb. 9, 2013
AP Photo/The Times-Picayune, Naomi Martin

(CBS/AP) NEW ORLEANS - Police said four people were wounded in a weekend shooting on Bourbon Street during New Orleans' countdown to Mardi Gras, while thousands continued partying despite the violence.

A video taken by a witness Saturday night and released the next day showed footage of people standing shoulder to shoulder in the city's famed tourist district, holding green plastic cups and wearing gaudy hats or masks.

Police said in an email that the video depicts an argument involving one of the shooting victims and the suspects. Two men are seen leaving the argument and returning with a third, then approaching the victim as at least one of the suspects begins shooting.

Four shots are heard in rapid succession, followed by screams, according to police. A man whom police identified as one of the suspects is shown walking through the crowd with his arm extended as the gunshots are heard, though it's difficult to make out a weapon.

Police said Sunday that they were seeking the three men and that they have identified one suspect, but did not release the name.

The shootings wounded two men and two women, three of whom were treated and released Sunday. One man hit in the abdomen, thigh and pelvis was in stable condition Sunday after surgery the previous night, New Orleans Police spokesman Hilal Williams said.

Of those treated and released, a man was shot in the buttocks, one woman was shot on the chin and right foot, and the second woman was shot on the toe, police said. No ages or names were released.

The shooting came on the last weekend of partying before Mardi Gras, the Fat Tuesday celebration that is the signature tourist event of the year in New Orleans. And for thousands, the partying continued despite the shooting. Parades rolled under cloudy skies Sunday before crowds of onlookers, though the shootings were on the minds of some revelers.

Some who were on Bourbon when the shooting occurred came back Sunday. Hours after the shooting, there was little evidence that violence had occurred. Revelers were in full party mode, packing the block amid a heavy police presence.

"We're not worried," said Raymond Reginato of Toronto, Canada, who was in New Orleans with friends for a bachelor party this weekend. "Everybody's in a good mood. I really believe that was an isolated incident."

Jackie Counte Cooley of Gainesville, Ga., said the shooting was enough to deter her from Bourbon Street, though she was among the revelers packed nearby along Canal Street taking in Sunday's parades.

"It's my first Mardi Gras, and I'm having a good time, but I won't be going to Bourbon Street," she said.

  • Crimesider Staff

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