Shooting at Shepard Recreation Center in West Philadelphia injures five and leads to three arrests

Five people are injured and three suspects are in custody after 96 shots were fired outside a West Philadelphia recreation center while children played inside on Tuesday night.

Police say at least two men in a white SUV began shooting shortly before 7 p.m. near the Shepard Recreation Center on the corner of 57th Street and Haverford Avenue, 6ABC reported.

After the suspects drove off, police found five people between the ages of 16 and 25 suffering from gunshot wounds. At the time of the shooting, two were on the street, two were on the sidewalk and one just happened to be driving by.

Two people were hit in the head and transported to an area hospital where they’re listed in critical condition. Two more suffered graze wounds and one was shot in the hand, FOX29 reported.

Police say they recovered multiple weapons at the scene and from the SUV, which crashed on the corner of Haverford Avenue and Farson Street a few minutes after the shooting. The four suspects tried to escape on foot. Three were caught and one got away.

Authorities added that two of the people hit were legally-licensed firearm holders, but it’s not clear if they fired their weapons, CBS News reported.

“The proliferation of weapons in our communities is a major concern, but that doesn’t absolve those who choose to pull the trigger,” Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw said in a tweet addressing the incident.

At the time of the shooting, there were children inside the rec center practicing basketball, football and cheerleading.

Officers on their normal patrol heard the gunfire and rushed to the scene, where they saw the suspects get back into the SUV and drive away

“Excellent work from our (Philadelphia Police) officers who run towards the danger in these unimaginable situations,” Outlaw said.

It’s still not clear what caused the shooting. Anyone with information is asked to call police at 215-686-TIPS.

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