People run on a closed street to escape from what they thought was gunfire at a gay pride parade in Washington, U.S. June 8, 2019, in this still image taken from a video obtained via social media. Petro Kasfikis/via REUTERS
(Reuters) – Several people were injured at a gay pride parade in Washington on Saturday when some in the crowd ran to escape what they thought was gunfire, and a man was later arrested when police found a firearm near him, officials said.
Police, at the outset of the incident, received a report of a man with a gun at a park, Washington police Commander Guillermo Rivera told reporters.
“As the officers were going to that scene there was a crowd of people running away from it,” Rivera said. “Some of the individuals in the crowd said that there was a man with a gun and that someone had fired shots.”
But police did not find any evidence of shots fired, Rivera said.
Seven people were taken to hospitals with non-life threatening injuries they sustained in the disturbance and a number of other people with minor injuries were treated at the scene, Rivera said.
The name of the man arrested after police found a firearm near him was not immediately released.
Washington Deputy Mayor Kevin Donahue had earlier said on Twitter that people in the city’s Dupont Circle were injured “running from what they thought were gunshots” but that there was no active shooter.
Police are reviewing video to determine what might have caused the sounds, Rivera said.
Gay pride is celebrated around the world in June, with some parades set on or around June 28 to mark the anniversary of a 1969 police raid at the Stonewall Inn gay bar in New York, where patrons fought back and inspired the modern LGBT rights movement.
Reporting by Alex Dobuzinskis in Los Angeles; Editing by Meredith Mazzilli & Kim Coghill