Bystander injured seriously in gunfire Victim had left AFRAM festival

August 15, 1993|By Staff report

A 31-year old woman in a crowd leaving the AFRAM Expo '93 late Friday was shot accidentally in the chest as she passed two men who were arguing, police said.

Sandra Anderson of the 4000 block of Dudley Ave. in Northeast Baltimore happened to be next to a man who fired a gun at another man just before 10 p.m. Friday in the 200 block of S. Howard St., investigators said.

She was shot in the left side of the chest and admitted to the Maryland Shock Trauma Center, where she was in serious but stable condition yesterday.

Police were seeking a man 19 to 26 years old, wearing black shorts and a white T-shirt, who ran south on Howard Street after the shooting.

The man police believe was the intended shooting victim also escaped and apparently was not hurt, police said.

The shooting occurred on the first day of the three-day 17th annual AFRAM Festival at Festival Hall. The festival, celebrating the cultural heritage of African-Americans and one of the city's largest ethnic events each year, is expected to draw as many as 100,000 people to the Convention Center area of downtown, event organizers predict.

The number of police officers patrolling the event was not increased after the shooting, a police spokesman said yesterday, but officers were monitoring the crowd more closely, and all officers in patrol cars were shifted to foot patrols.

"It was crowded, but everybody was just walking around and enjoying themselves," the spokesman said. "Then it just happened."

Police said that the shooting was not connected to the festival.

Police and event organizers said they usually do not have serious problems at the festival.

"The shooting was an unfortunate incident, but it happened outside of AFRAM," said Julia Woodland, chairman of the festival's executive planning committee. "We don't want to get a black eye from this."

Mrs. Woodland said there has never been a serious incident on festival grounds since AFRAM started 17 years ago.

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