The death toll from mass shootings in the U.S. totals more than 8,000 so far this year, revealing the ongoing gun violence in the country. According to data from the non-profit group Gun Violence Archive, 196 mass shooting incidents have occurred this year with 8,345 fatalities so far. The group recorded 77 gun-related incidents across the country by July 28, the latest being the Denver, Colorado shooting.
In another gun violence incident on the same day, three people were killed and seven others injured following a shooting in New Orleans. City police spokesman Aaron Looney said in a statement that the shooting happened Saturday night on the 3400 block of Claiborne Avenue, about 3 miles (4.83 kilometers) from the French Quarter.
Detectives "determined that two unknown armed subjects believed to be wearing hooded sweatshirts allegedly approached a group of people standing outside of a business and opened fire, striking 10 of the individuals," then fled, a police statement said, as reported by Agence France-Press (AFP).
Police superintendent Michael Harrison, speaking to reporters overnight at the scene of the crime, said one of the suspects was believed to be armed with a rifle, while the other carried a handgun. "We believe they actually stood over one of the individuals and fired multiple rounds and then fled," Harrison told local media. "This has to be personal," he said.
"Firing indiscriminately into a crowd? Shooting 10 people? Killing three? That's personal, it doesn't get more personal, and we take it personal," he said. "Whoever did this, you should know that law enforcement takes it personal, and we're coming for you."
The victims, two males and a female, "were pronounced dead at the scene," police spokesman Looney said in a statement. Seven additional gunshot victims, five males and two females, were rushed to area hospitals either in private vehicles or by ambulances. The local NBC affiliate said that one of the victims believed to be in critical condition underwent surgery. The motive for the shooting was unknown.
Last year saw a two of the deadliest mass shootings in modern U.S. history. The Last Vegas shooting rekindled a years-long national debate over whether easy access to firearms was contributing to the trend of mass shootings. In October 2017, a gunman in Las Vegas fired down from a hotel room at an outdoor concert, killing 58 people and wounding hundreds.
Texas marks the second mass shooting in the U.S. last year. The carnage saw a gunman wearing a bulletproof vest use an assault rifle to open fire on the congregation of a small-town Texas church, killing 26 people and wounding 20 more. The lone gunman, dressed in black tactical gear and a ballistic vest, drove up to the white-steepled First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs and started firing inside. He kept shooting once he entered, killing or wounding victims ranging in age from 5 to 72 years old. The shooting occurred on the eighth anniversary of the Nov. 5, 2009, massacre of 13 people at the Fort Hood Army base in central Texas. The gunman, identified as 26-year-old Devin Kelley was described by authorities as a young white male who was found dead in his vehicle after being confronted by a local resident. The massacre renewed questions about why someone with a history of violence could amass an arsenal of lethal weaponry.