Three people were fatally shot, including a 3-year-old child, when an apparent dog sale turned violent in Jacksonville, Fla., on Saturday night, police said.
A group of five people — four adults and the child — traveled to an apartment complex on Jacksonville’s south side to either buy or sell a dog around 10 p.m., Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office Assistant Chief J.D. Stronko said early Sunday morning at a press conference.
During the interaction, some sort of dispute erupted, followed by gunfire, according to investigators.
“For reasons that are unknown to us at this time, a dispute ensued in a breezeway between two of the apartment buildings, resulting in four of the five individuals being shot,” Stronko said.
Two adults, both believed to be in their 20s, and the 3-year-old were killed. Another adult was wounded.
Two men were seen sprinting away from the scene and fleeing in a vehicle, Stronko said. The men were not described in any way, and none of the victims have been publicly identified.
“We have just about as many questions regarding this incident as you do right now,” Stronko told reporters.
More than 14,000 people have been killed in gun violence across the United States in 2023, according to the Gun Violence Archive. Another 17,000 people have committed suicide with a firearm.
Of the 31,636 total deaths, 222 have been children under 11.