After the city of Chattanooga, Tennessee, experienced its second mass shooting in less than a week early Sunday, the mayor vowed to treat gun violence “like the crisis that it is.”
According to Chattanooga Police Department spokesperson Jeremy Eames, three people were killed and at least 14 others were injured when gunfire erupted at a nightclub shortly before 2:45 a.m., with some being hit by bullets and others being hit by fleeing vehicles.
According to Eames, two of the three deaths were caused by gunshot wounds, and one was caused by injuries sustained when the victim was hit by a vehicle.
“I’m sick of standing in front of you and talking about guns and bodies,” Chattanooga Mayor Tim Kelly said at a press conference on Sunday.
According to police, investigators believe multiple shooters used various types of firearms during the incident. There have been no arrests, and the motive for the shooting is unknown, but authorities believe it was a one-time occurrence in which one or more people were targeted.
“We hope to have some suspects in custody soon,” Kelly said Monday on CNN’s “New Day,” adding that federal agencies are assisting the Chattanooga Police Department with the investigation.
While Sunday’s shooting – one of at least ten mass shootings in the United States over the weekend, according to CNN – appeared to be an isolated incident, it was the city’s second in as many weekends, emphasizing the country’s gun violence crisis.
“Three people have been killed here in the last ten days, and about 23 people have been injured,” Kelly told CNN. “So it’s a bad situation.”
On May 28, six people were shot in downtown Chattanooga’s Cherry Street area during an altercation between two groups, according to police. Eames stated at the time that the majority of those killed were teenagers or in their early twenties.
A 15-year-old male was arrested in connection with the shooting, according to a release from the mayor’s office on Friday. According to the release, he is charged with six counts of attempted murder, possession of a weapon during the commission of a dangerous felony, unlawful possession of a weapon, and reckless endangerment.
According to the release, investigators identified another suspect and were working to locate him or her as of Friday.
Kelly has promised to work with the city council to address gun violence in the coming weeks, telling reporters on Sunday, “Chattanooga will treat this like the crisis that it is.”
However, he also wants Congress to take up the issue, citing mandatory background checks and the prohibition of high capacity magazines as necessary measures on Sunday.
Kelly told CNN, “I’m not trying to take away anyone’s Second Amendment rights.” “However, I believe we can all agree that there are some common sense approaches here.”
The shooting on Sunday occurred as the country was still reeling from a string of shootings over the previous month. There was a school massacre in Uvalde, Texas; a violent assault on a medical facility in Tulsa, Oklahoma; a racist shooting at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York; and an attack on a Taiwanese church service in Orange County, California.
According to Gun Violence Archive, there have been 246 mass shootings in the United States in 2022, which is more than the number of days in the year. A mass shooting is defined by CNN and the Gun Violence Archive as one in which at least four people are shot, excluding the shooter.
The mayor stated on Monday that a “comprehensive approach” is required. “It’s a law enforcement problem, but it’s also a problem with gun access,” he told CNN. “This is not the place for politics.” This is something where we all need to work together to figure out how we can help solve the problem.”
“It’s been said that the United States has three parties: Republicans, Democrats, and mayors,” he said. “As mayors, we will do whatever is necessary to keep our people safe.” But we could use some assistance from the federal government.”