Six people shot at large California party amid stay-at-home order
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. – A shooting broke out at a party, sending six people to the hospital Saturday and launching a search for four suspects.
The party, which happened amid statewide stay-at-home orders intended to slow the spread of the coronavirus, might have gone unnoticed until frantic witnesses called 911 shortly after midnight from an apartment complex, Kern County Sheriff’s Lt. Cesa Ollague said.
“Unfortunately, it came to a bad end,” he said.
Deputies who responded to the scene said the party was large, Ollague said, but he didn’t know exactly how many people were in attendance.
The victims, including one juvenile and five adults, suffered gunshot wounds, but they were expected to survive, he said.
Investigators found 94 shell casings and three live rounds at the scene.
The partygoers reported seeing four men driving away in a white car, the lieutenant said, and investigators tried to determine whether they attended the party or were participants of a drive-by shooting.
Since March 19, California’s social distancing order has banned nonessential gatherings of any number of people. The state’s 40 million residents are told to leave their homes only for “essential” reasons, such as to get medications, shop for groceries and supplies, care for family members or exercise outdoors.
The state has more than 21,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases and nearly 600 deaths, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University.