An unsuspecting TikToker caught a Colorado Springs shooting on camera while trying to record her friends during a carnival outside a local mall.
The carnival, set up outside the Citadel Mall, was still going strong just after 9pm when the shooting started. The panic that immediately followed the first gunshots was captured on film by TikToker @chrollosspellbook, who was attempting to film her friends on a ride.
As @chrollosspellbook’s friends go zipping past on the multicolored carnival ride, a panic suddenly begins. No gunshots can be clearly heard on the recording, but soon people begin to rush past @chrollosspellbook and a friend who was standing near her. Distant screaming can barely be heard behind the fledging panic of nearby people.
As people swarm past, @chrollosspellbook’s friend can be heard asking what is happening before calmly asking if “there is a gun shooting.” She then directs nearby people to a clear path out, and the duo joins the rush of bodies as they seek shelter from the violence.
After a brief break in the video, the teens can be seen joining a small group of people outside the carnival. @chrollosspellbook can be heard frantically noting that she captured the chaos on video, and reminding her friend that their friends are “still on the ride.” Her unerringly calm friend flatly informs another group that “I think there might be a shooter or something” as @chrollosspellbook worries for their still-trapped friends.
Thankfully, the teens and their friends got out safely. Several followup videos address questions from viewers and assure concerned commenters of their safety. The girls said a rush of around nine people went past mid-recording, and they could hear them urging others to “run.” The grounded duo had no choice but to temporarily leave their friends, according to @chrollosspellbook, because they were “getting trampled and fight or flight kicked in.” They managed to get across the street, where the second half of the viral recording took place.
Their trapped friends called to check up on @chrollosspellbook and her companion around 10 minutes later. All four made it out safely, though events of this sort may have been permanently ruined for one friend, who’d been enjoying their first ever carnival experience.
At least three people were injured in the violence, according to the Gazette. Multiple eyewitnesses claim they saw several young men open fire into a crowd of attendees. When the gunfire stopped, one witness, Audrie Vela, said she saw two people on the ground. A third was rushed to the hospital with serious injuries, according to reporting from KKTV.
The violence is assumed by police to be an isolated incident between two known groups of people. Police do not believe there is any further danger to the community.
In the comment section for the video, numerous people seized on the chillingly calm reaction from @chrollosspellbook’s friend. Commenters called out American culture for perpetuating and normalizing gun violence to such a degree that an active shooter causes only a mild panic.
Comments dragged the U.S. for its familiarity with gun violence, noting that the video portrays “just another normal day in America.”
Other viewers applauded @chrollosspellbook for being so clearly concerned for her friends in the midst of an active shooting. They latched onto her distress and commended her for being “such a good friend” and assured her that she had no choice but to run.
Update 12:10pm CT, July 2: When reached for comment, @chrollosspellbook told the Daily Dot that she and her friends, including the ones on the ride, are all safe.
“They soon called us and told us they got off the ride safely. Once we got out of the carnival we were standing in a crowd of people and these two people were crying saying their friend got shot,” she recalled.
She also noted that “later on I saw an update online saying there were five victims,” which is backed up by reporting. Police were reportedly informed of a shooting across the street from the carnival while responding to the initial incident. They are reportedly currently investigating whether the nearby shooting, which left two people injured, was connected to the carnival shooting.
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