America on Edge: Twelve Injured in Stampede Over False Rumor of Active Shooter at Orlando Fourth of July Fireworks Celebration


A crowd of an estimated 100,000 gathered at Lake Eola Park in Orlando, Florida to watch the city’s Independence Day fireworks display panicked and stampeded during the fireworks show over an unfounded rumor of an active shooter. Firecrackers reportedly set off in the crowd that were mistaken for gunshots provoked the stampede, injuring twelve and separating families.

Screen images from videos posted to Twitter show fireworks exploding over panicked crowd.

Videos from the scene:

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Parents were separated from their children during the stampede.

WKMG-TV reporters described their panicked (and morbid) reaction, hiding in a news van and putting a cellphone on video record for a final record in case they didn’t make it.

WKMG also reported twelve injured, “Someone shot off fireworks in the middle of a crowd watching the main fireworks at Lake Eola in Orlando, spooked people, set off a panic and a stampede. 12 injured, Orlando police say. YOU’RE AT A PROFESSIONAL FIREWORKS SHOW, WHY ARE YOU SHOOTING OFF FIREWORKS IN A CROWD?!?!?!?!”…That’s according to the deputy chief of Orlando police.”

Orlando Police reported there was no shooter:

“IMPORTANT MESSAGE: To our community members now in Downtown Orlando, please know that there is NO evidence of a shooting in the area. Our officers are now working to secure the area. There is NO public safety hazard at this time…At this time, it appears that a noise during the fireworks show confused some spectators, causing the reaction. No serious injuries have been reported. Only minor injuries suffered by some spectators who fell during the commotion…FAMILIES AND LOVED ONES! If you were separated, you can make your way to our Family Reunification Designated Area at N. Rosalind Ave. & E. Robinson St. Spread the Word…UPDATE: We are happy to announce that all families at the Family Reunification Center at Rosalind & Robinson have been reunited! ** The LOST & FOUND AREA has been moved to the Lake Eola Parks Office at N. Eola Dr. & E. Washington St. Thank you for sharing!”

More local coverage:

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