FLINT, Michigan—Mayor Sheldon Neeley and Police Chief Phil Hart provided an update on shootings that occurred on July 25, 2020, and overnight into the early morning hours of July 26, 2020, during a 4 p.m. press conference today. (See video below)
They were joined by City Council Vice President Maurice Davis, Dr. Bobby Mukkamala (president of the Michigan State Medical Society), Pastor Jeffrey Hawkins, members of the Michigan State Police and other Flint religious leaders.
There were 12 shootings in the city, six of which occurred at a pop-up party at Hallwood Plaza. Police were attempting to shutdown the event when a fight started in the crowd and shots were fired. Mayor Neeley announced on June 2 that the city was seeing illegal pop-up parties occurring in the city and would respond with additional enforcement. Due to the dangers of COVID-19, the governor’s executive orders limit the size of all outdoor events to no more than 100 people and require social distancing and wearing masks.
Since that time, police have worked with multiple entities planning large events that would be in violation of the governor’s executive orders to have the events cancelled — and, if warnings were not heeded, to shutdown events — at Brennan Park, a club on Clio road, the Flat Lot, the Rutherford Parking Ramp and the former Flint Central High School.
Police have made multiple arrests, recovered multiple guns, and additional arrests are likely in connection to the incidents on Saturday and early Sunday. In total, 10 of the victims were listed in good condition, one in serious and one in critical. The other shootings appear unrelated to the party.
Statement from Mayor Sheldon Neeley: “First, I want to give my thanks and praise to the men and women of the Flint Police Department as well as the Michigan State Police who assisted us.
“The city became aware of this event ahead of time and had proactively worked to try to stop the event. In fact, the event was shut down once. Unfortunately, these irresponsible individuals chose to move it to another location despite police warnings.
“Thank God police were there and already on the scene trying to break up the party when the shooting started. It is unconscionable for anyone to organize or attend an event of this magnitude. This event was grossly irresponsible even before it turned violent. There remains a silent killer among us with COVID-19.
“Let me be clear: The City of Flint has not and will not tolerate irresponsible gatherings of people nor should the residents of flint. We have a responsibility to protect our community from the spread of COVID-19. Those who knowingly break the law and bring lawlessness into our community will face consequences.
“We remain at an intersection of crisis and I ask all residents of Flint to be our partners in stopping the spread of this deadly virus and for ending the senseless violence on our streets. Please also join my family and I in praying for all of the victims in the city and in the county.”