The four door sedan stopped near an intersection in a central Florida city where people were milling about, tinted windows rolled down, and from inside the vehicle they started shooting in all directionscausing injuries to 11 men, two of whom were in critical condition, according to police authorities.
Just a minute before a school bus had dropped off some children in the Lakeland neighborhood Monday afternoon.
“It sounded like it was one of those huge coils of firecrackers tied together,” said neighbor Tina Smith, who lives 50 feet (15 meters) from the property where the shots were fired. “But you knew they weren’t firecrackers.”
Authorities offered a $5,000 reward on Tuesday. for information leading to the arrest of the suspects implicated in the shooting in Lakeland, a city of 112,000 located about halfway between Tampa and Orlando.
One of the seriously wounded was shot in the stomach and the other in the jaw. The remainder sustained non-life-threatening injuries.. The victims were men between the ages of 20 and 35, Lakeland Police Chief Sammy Taylor said at a news conference.
after the shots, the vehicle ran away. Investigators believed they found it Tuesday morning in a Lakeland neighborhood and planned to run lab tests on it to see if it was the vehicle involved in the shootings.
“I’ve lived here 34 years, and I can say that I’ve never worked on an event where so many people were shot at the same time, ever,” Taylor said. “We consider ourselves a small city (…) and when things like this happen, they affect us fully, at least to me”.