At least six people were shot, none fatally, on the campus of Texas Southern University in Houston during an event honoring local rapper Trae July 22.
University spokeswoman Eva Pickens told the Houston Chronicle the shootings occurred at about 8:30 p.m. and were gang-related. All six of the wounded were taken to area hospitals and are expected to recover.
Local promoter Peter Role told the paper he heard what sounded “like the Fourth of July” in the nearby parking lot.
“We heard some gunshots and everybody was hitting the ground,” he said, calling the shooting “an isolated incident, hopefully it won’t happen again.”
Promotional materials described the event as a free family block party, according to the Chronicle, in celebration of the second “Trae Day.” The event was to feature live performances, kiddie rides, face painting, HIV testing and free school supplies.
Trae was honored by the city a year ago for his community work with at-risk kids in Houston and it doesn’t appear the shootings had any connection to the rapper or anyone affiliated with him, spokeswoman Nancy Byron told the newspaper.
“Honestly, we’re hearing so many different accounts, none of us are really sure what happened,” she said. “We heard some people got hurt. We’re very depressed about it and we feel like it’s a black eye on an otherwise very community-driven event.”
“My prayers are with the victims of tonight’s tragic events and their families,” Councilman Peter Brown said in a statement cited by the Chronicle.