NATIONAL NEWS

2 juveniles charged in mass shooting at the Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl parade

Feb 16, 2024, 6:37 AM | Updated: 4:08 pm

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Two juveniles were charged with crimes connected to the mass shooting at the Kansas City Chiefs’ Super Bowl rally, authorities said Friday, as the city tries to recover in the aftermath of the violence.

A news release from the Jackson County Family Court said the juveniles are being detained in the county’s Juvenile Detention Center on gun-related and resisting arrest charges. Additional charges are expected as the investigation continues.

No further information was released. Defendants age 17 and under in Missouri are typically adjudicated through the juvenile system, which is far more private than the system for adults. Names of the accused are not released, nor are police documents such as probable cause statements.

In cases involving serious crimes such as murder, juveniles as young as 12 can be certified for trial as adults, said Lynn Urban, a professor who chairs the Criminal Justice and Criminology Department at the University of Central Missouri.

Federal law prohibits the death penalty for anyone under age 18 at the time of the crime.

Police initially detained three juveniles but released one who they determined wasn’t involved in the shooting. Police are looking for others who may have been involved and are calling for witnesses, victims and people with cellphone video of the violence to call a dedicated hotline.

Meanwhile, Kansas Citians are turning to religious gatherings, vigils and counseling to try to cope with the horror of what happened.

A mother and popular disc jockey died in the burst of gunfire Wednesday as the parade and rally were concluding, and 22 others — more than half of them children — were injured. By Friday, two people remained in critical condition and one was in serious condition. Most of the injured children were out of the hospital and expected to recover.

But the emotional recovery is only just beginning in a community horrified that two juveniles could cause such trauma. Police believe a dispute between several people led to the shooting.

The slain woman was identified by radio station KKFI-FM as Lisa Lopez-Galvan, host of “Taste of Tejano.” On Friday, a family friend, Katrina Rojas Vincent, said she could feel Lopez-Galvan’s presence as she stood near the shooting site.

“Her spirit will always be here welcoming people back to this location, to not be afraid to not have any fear, to enjoy yourself and live your life,” Vincent said.

She described Lopez-Galvan as a vibrant, giving person.

“Always had that a smile ear to ear and just the positivity that she brought to our community with the music that she would play” on her radio program, Vincent said.

The Jackson County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office set up in-person counseling for the traumatized. Twelve people attended Thursday, including two children, spokesman Michael Mansur said Friday. The agency also established a hotline offering counseling, but Mansur didn’t immediately have information on how many called the hotline.

The Chiefs won their third Super Bowl in five years Sunday, beating the San Francisco 49ers 25-22 in overtime. The two previous celebrations went off without any trouble.

On Wednesday, players rode double-decker red buses through Missouri’s largest city. The parade ended with a rally at the sprawling Union Station. It was just breaking up with shots erupted. Many people thought they were hearing fireworks. Eventually, some ducked for cover. Others leapt over barriers and sprinted, many carrying children.

Beyond the gunshot wounds, several people were treated at hospitals for injuries suffered amid the chaos. So many personal belongings were left behind that police set up a site for people to try and find what they lost.

Two men at the rally jumped on and detained someone with a gun, though police have not confirmed whether it was one of the people arrested.

Paul Contreras of Bellevue, Nebraska, said he heard a man yelling to stop someone and was able to tackle the person from behind. Contreras noticed that the person he tackled had a gun, he said, and he wasn’t sure if he might have another under a heavy jacket.

Soon, Contreras was joined by another man.

“We’re like, we got to keep him down until law enforcement gets there. Because as much as we’re fighting to keep him down, he’s fighting to get up,” Contreras, whose daughter captured it all on video, told The Associated Press.

The man who helped Contreras was Trey Filter. He was with his family when he heard yells of “get him.”

“We was like, ‘We got him,’” Filter, 40, of the Wichita, Kansas, area, told AP. “I’ll always remember that. And then they started screaming, ‘There’s a gun!’”

The gun fell near his wife, Casey Filter, who picked it up. By then, the fleeing person was under a dogpile.

The shooting occurred despite the presence of more than 800 police officers in the area, including on top of nearby structures, said Mayor Quinton Lucas, who attended with his wife and mother and ran for safety when the shots were fired. But he doesn’t expect to cancel the upcoming St. Patrick’s Day parade.

“We have parades all the time. I don’t think they’ll end. Certainly we recognized the public safety challenges and issues that relate to them,” Lucas said.

Taylor Swift, who is dating Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce, donated $100,000 to Lopez-Galvan’s family. Two $50,000 donations were posted Friday under the singer’s name on a GoFundMe page. Swift’s representative confirmed the donations to Variety, the trade publication reported, and The Associated Press independently verified the posts.

Kansas City has long struggled with gun violence, and in 2020 it was among nine cities targeted by the U.S. Justice Department in an effort to crack down on violent crime. In 2023, the city matched a record with 182 homicides, most of which involved guns.

Lucas has joined with mayors across the country in calling for new laws to reduce gun violence, including mandating universal background checks.

___

Salter reported from O’Fallon, Missouri, and McFetridge reported from Des Moines, Iowa. Trisha Ahmed in Minneapolis and John Hanna in Topeka, Kansas, contributed.

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2 juveniles charged in mass shooting at the Kansas City Chiefs Super Bowl parade