10:45 a.m. — The Cincinnati police chief has raised the number of people injured in a deadly nightclub shooting to 16.
Chief Elliot Isaac also says five people are still hospitalized, two in critical condition and three in serious condition.
A 17th victim, 27-year-old O’Bryan Spikes, was killed in the Sunday morning shooting at the Cameo nightclub.
Isaac told the Cincinnati City Council in a Monday update that four uniformed officers working off-duty security at the Cameo club were not permitted to work inside the club under department rules.
Isaac said it appears multiple individuals fired shots. The chief is urging witnesses to come forward and cooperate with the investigation.
Cameo’s operator says it will remain closed until police and internal investigations are completed.
CINCINNATI, Oh (CBSN) — A gunfight broke out inside a crowded Cincinnati nightclub early Sunday, leaving one man dead and 15 others wounded after a dispute among several patrons escalated into a shootout, authorities say.
No suspects were in custody by late afternoon in the shooting at the Cameo club, which has a history of gun violence, and police say there is no indication of any terrorism link.
Cincinnati Police Chief Eliot Isaac says one of the wounded was in “extremely critical condition,” while a hospital spokeswoman says two victims were listed in critical condition.
Police began receiving calls at 1:30 a.m. about gunshots at the club near the Ohio River east of downtown Cincinnati. Isaac said some 200 people were inside the club, one of the few hip-hop venues in the city, for music and dancing.
Isaac identifies the dead man as 27-year-old O’Bryan Spikes, but provided no other details. He says 15 others were injured, with some already treated and released from hospitals.
“What we know at this point in the investigation is that several local men got into some type of dispute inside the bar, and it escalated into shots being fired from several individuals,” Isaac says.
Club patron Mauricio Thompson described a chaotic scene in which as many as 20 shots were fired as people scrambled to get away. He said there was a fight and people were yelling for security to intervene before the gunfire began.
“Once I got outside, people coming out bloody, gunshot wounds on them, some of their friends carrying them to the car, rushing them to the hospital,” Thompson tells WCPO-TV. “It was just crazy.”
Isaac says the club has its own security operation that uses detection wands and pat-downs, but that police believe several firearms got inside. Four officers were working security in the club’s parking lot and some tried unsuccessfully to revive the man who died.
Cameo’s Facebook profile says it caters to college students on Friday nights, when anyone over 18 is allowed in, while Saturdays are “grown and sexy night” for ages 21 and older.
The club has a history of gun violence, including a shooting inside the club on New Year’s Day in 2015 and one in the parking lot in September of that year, City Manager Harry Black says.
Police Capt. Kim Williams says there was “just a lot of chaos, obviously, when shots were fired.”
“Saturday night, it is a very young crowd. We have had incidents here in the past, but this is by far the worst,” she says.
Referring to initial speculation about possible terrorism, Mayor John Cranley says: “What difference does that make to the victims? Innocent people were shot.”
He calls the shootings “unacceptable” and says authorities would work to find ways to prevent such violence.
A single body was removed by the coroner shortly after 6 a.m. A federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives team was also at the scene.
Among the injured, five were treated at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center and released, hospital spokeswoman Kelly Martin says. She says two people were in critical condition and another two were listed in stable condition. She has no details on the types of injuries or the ages of the victims. Other injured people were taken to or drove themselves to other hospitals.
Authorities ask anyone with information to come forward. Investigators are checking to see if surveillance cameras were working, Williams says.
An Associated Press phone call to the club Sunday morning went unanswered.
The area is mostly industrial but also home to several nightclubs with a smattering of homes. A regional airport is nearby. The neighborhood is fairly desolate at night, with the exception of the nightlife scene and 24-hour gas stations. The road where the club is located was easily cordoned off by a single police cruiser and officer at either end.
First responders had problems reaching the shooting victims because the parking lots were full, Sgt. Eric Franz tells the Cincinnati Enquirer.
Ohio Gov. John Kasich says on Twitter that he was “saddened to learn about last night’s shooting” and that he was offering the state’s assistance.
“We recognize the horrific nature of this incident,” says City Manager Harry Black. “I have full confidence in our police professionals who are devoting all the necessary resources toward working this case. I want to recognize all of our first responders who answered the call last night and handled a very difficult situation extremely well. As our assessment and investigation continues we will continue to share information as soon as we are able.”