9 injured in shooting outside Cincinnati bar, police say

CINCINNATI (AP) — At least nine people were injured — none seriously — in a shooting outside a Cincinnati bar early Sunday, police said.

The shooting took place shortly after 1:30 a.m. outside Mr. Pitiful’s bar in the Ohio City’s Over-the-Rhine neighborhood, a popular nightlife area. Most of the victims suffered lower body injuries, Cincinnati police Lt. Col. Mike John told reporters.

John told a press conference on Sunday that eight men and one woman between the ages of 23 and 47 were injured. The nine people being treated at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center had been discharged, hospital spokeswoman Heather Chura told The (Cincinnati) Enquirer.

A police officer fired a bullet at a suspect who fled the scene, but it was unclear if that person had been hit, which John said was “bit unusual”. More shots were fired after that person fled, so police believe at least two people were shooting, he said.

“What I can tell you is that the individual he shot was actively firing a gun at the time,” John said. The suspect fled. He said he thought there was “no doubt” the officer’s immediate response saved lives.

Police said a fight broke out between two groups and officers saw at least two people involved brandishing guns and shooting at each other, The Enquirer reported.

John said police used what he called two ‘bang balls’ – a ‘percussion instrument’ with a ‘very loud noise’ – to disperse a crowd they said had gathered around officers trying to help the injured.

Another shooting in the nearby central business district left two people injured, but police said it was unrelated.

Mayor Aftab Pureval called the gunfire “completely and utterly unacceptable”.

“The use of firearms to resolve conflicts cannot become a normal part of our culture,” Pureval said, praising the officers for a quick response that “probably saved many more from injury and prevented the dead”.

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