(Reuters) - An active shooter was reported at a food festival in California on Sunday and a police spokesman said there are casualties.
Few other details were immediately available. NBC Bay Area reported that ambulance crews were told 11 people "were down" after shots rang out at the Gilroy Garlic Festival, an annual event in south of San Jose.
Videos posted on social media appeared to show festival attendees scattering in confusion as at least one loud popping sound could be heard in the background.
"What's going on?" a woman can be heard asking on one video. "Who'd shoot up a garlic festival?"
GILROY — Police are at the scene of an apparent shooting with more than one person hit at the Gilroy Garlic Festival, authorities said.
Police responded to the festival grounds at Christmas Hill Park near Miller Avenue and Uvas Park Drive around 5:30 p.m., but few details of the shooting were immediately available.
A dispatcher answering a Gilroy police line said an inquiry about the reports was ‘inappropriate’ and sent a caller to voicemail.
Evenny Reyes, 13, spent the day at the festival with her friends and some relatives.
“We were just leaving and we saw a guy with a bandana wrapped around his leg because he got shot. And there were people on the ground, crying,” said Reyes. “There was a little kid hurt on the ground. People were throwing tables and cutting fences to get out.”
Reyes said she didn’t run at first, because the gunshots sounded like fireworks. “It started going for five minutes, maybe three. It was like the movies — everyone was crying, people were screaming.”
As of 6:40 p.m., Katherine Filice, who has headed the festival’s promotional effort for several years, said the PR team members were “all OK” but that she had no further information as the situation at Christmas Hill Park was still fluid.
The shooting occurred as the 41st annual event — one of the nation’s most famous food festivals — was wrapping up its three-day run. Besides drawing food lovers from around the country, the festival serves as Gilroy’s top fund-raiser for the year, with volunteers staffing the event to earn money for their clubs, schools and other nonprofit groups. Since 1979, the festival has raised more than $11.7 million for local nonprofits and schools.
6 pm was the closing time, but the entrance gates were to have closed one hour prior to that.