MAPLE HEIGHTS, Ohio (WJW) — A Monday afternoon shooting at Stafford Park left multiple people dead, including a pregnant woman and her unborn child and husband.
A 13-year-old boy was also injured, but is expected to be OK.
Police Chief Todd Hansen said the shooting happened just after 3 p.m., while a large party was happening in the park.
The shooter, who police said is a 29-year-old man and the brother of the woman, began fighting with others. The fight escalated, and the man pulled a gun and began firing, Hansen said.
Preliminary information suggests the violence stemmed from a “longstanding feud” between the shooter and the victims, he said.
“He was targeting these specific people. It was not a random event,” Hansen said. “Unfortunately, it became public today, because he found these people here.”
The woman was shot in the parking lot. Her unborn child did not survive, Hansen said.
The 13-year-old boy happened to be standing nearby and was grazed by a bullet and “will be fine,” Hansen said. The boy is believed to be related to the other victims, but it’s unclear how.
“I think the juvenile was hit by chance. I don’t think the juvenile was targeted. He just happened to be close to the female,” he said.
The woman’s husband, a 31-year-old man, fled and was fatally shot near the park’s bathrooms, Hansen said.
Maple Heights police officers caught the suspected shooter as he attempted to flee onto Auburn Avenue, Hansen said.
Witnesses who were in a church group in the pavilion near where the shooting occurred told FOX 8 News they scattered when shots rang out, bringing nearby children to safety.
The group was heard praying when a FOX 8 News crew arrived at the park near Milkovich Middle School and Maryville Avenue.