Three dead, 15 hurt in Garlic Festival shooting; suspect killed by police

One suspect is dead and authorities are investigating whether a second suspect was involved in a mass shooting at the Gilroy Garlic Festival on Sunday in which three other people were killed and at least 15 injured, Gilroy police Chief Scot Smithee said.

The shooting was reported at 5:41 p.m. on the north side of the area of the internationally renowned festival, and Smithee said at a late-night news conference that Gilroy officers engaged with the suspect in less than a minute, shooting and killing him. Smithee didn’t have an identity for the gunman. The gunman used some sort of a rifle, Smithee said, and it appeared the shooting appears to have been “somewhat random.”

The shooting suspect appears to have entered the site via a creek hat borders a parking area, and used some sort of tool to get past the secure fence line, according to Smithee. Witnesses reported that there may be a second suspect involved, but Smithee said investigators are still trying to confirm that. “It’s sort of a nightmare that you hope you never have to live in reality,” he said of the shooting.

Hospitals in Santa Clara County received multiple patients from a shooting at the Gilroy Garlic Festival on Sunday, including one person who died, a county hospital spokeswoman said. St. Louise Regional Hospital received six patients from the shooting, and one of those patients died, according to county health system spokeswoman Joy Alexiou. The conditions of the others ranged late Sunday night from fair to critical.

Two of the patients admitted to St. Louise were transferred to Santa Clara Valley Medical Center, which also had five other people admitted for injuries related to the shooting, Alexiou said. St. Louise treated five other people for lesser injuries, not necessarily gunshot wounds, Alexiou said. Two victims have been admitted to Stanford Medical Center, according to hospital spokeswoman Lisa Kim. She would not say what those patients’ conditions are, citing medical confidentiality. The first reports of the shooting at the internationally known festival, finishing its 2019 run Sunday night, came in shortly after 5:30 p.m. At least one suspect was still being sought by police who have flooded the festival grounds Sunday night.

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