Don Carter Lanes shooting in Rockford, Illinois leaves 3 people dead, 3 injured with 37 year old gunman arrested in random shooting. No known motive.
The shooting happened just before 7pm, Saturday night at Don Carter Lanes at Shooters Bar & Grill in the city of Rockford about 90 minutes northwest of Chicago. Authorities described the shooting as a random attack.
At least two teenagers were shot. It’s not known if the people shot and killed were employees or guests at the bowling alley.
Police told of receiving a call around 6.55pm on Saturday of someone having opened fire in an outdoor bar area of the bowling alley according to a police press conference given in the hours after the shooting.
When police arrived, they found multiple victims and a person of interest who is now in custody the Rockford Register Star reported. As a result, there is no longer any ‘active threat’ to the area.
— Shane B. Murphy (@shanermurph) December 27, 2020
Rockford Police Chief Dan O’Shea said that the investigation was ‘very, very fluid’ and still ongoing.
The chief also noted that the State’s Attorney’s Office is now involved and that no officers fired their weapons during the arrest of the suspect.
Don Carter lanes posted on Facebook at around 7.20pm a status saying ‘Pray please’.
Officers from multiple agencies including the Rockford Police Department and the Illinois State Police have been on the scene.
— Eric Watkins (@EricAJournalist) December 27, 2020
‘I was three steps away from the shooter’
A report via the dailymail, cited Amanda Hollenbeck, 24, who was at the bowling alley with her boyfriend at the time of the shooting saying she’d been trapped on the balcony area when gunshots rang out.
‘So my boyfriend and I were legit just ordering a drink… And heard a loud bang I froze everyone else ran.. he grabbed me and then 3 shots also rang out… An older man was shot in the head.. and another on the other side of the tent on the balcony where I was standing got shot as well… It was terrifying. You hear about shootings but to witness it… man it was scary as f***!’
‘I heard a loud bang and froze. I was three steps away from the shooter. If it would’ve been any longer I’d be dead,’ Hollenbeck told the media outlet.
Only the bar was open at the bowling alley on Saturday night after the state of Illinois suspended all bowling from November 20.
The bar, Shooters Bar & Grill, has remained open for outside drinking and takeout.
Rockford, a city of 150,000 people about 80 miles from Chicago, has experienced its deadliest year for homicides, according to records that date back to 1965.
Thirty-five people have been killed in the city this year, breaking the previous record of 31 in 1996.
No known motive for Saturday’s mass shooting was immediately known.