TRENTON, N.J. (WPVI) —
For 12 years the annual arts festival in was a safe venue, but that all changed this year when 22 people were injured, 17 from gunshots when multiple people started shooting.
Recovering after being trampled by those fleeing the barrage of bullets at the Art All Night Festival, Tamar, who has a broken leg, is on a mission to feel safe.
“Are my children happy to go out in public places? No! Are my nieces and nephews? No,” he said.
Tamar is not alone. Dozens of community members attended a ‘hope and healing’ session intended to help those affected cope with the stress of the recent violence Monday night.
“We’re having a lot of shootings and we’re having a lot of violence in the city,” said Mercer County Prosecutor Angelo Onofri. “I think an event like this is extremely helpful, not only to deal with the mass shooting event but to deal with these other shootings that are occurring on all too frequent basis.”
Officials said the festival shooting stemmed from a dispute between two individuals believed to be from rival gangs who opened fire at an event with 1000 in attendance.
“It’s been so quiet the last few years, I was surprised to hear it was a gang shooting,” said Jim Young.
But for those who survived that night, it’s not a one-time occurrence but a daily fight.
“This is PTSD. You don’t have to go to war for that. You’re getting that right here in our community. And nobody is addressing that. We’re in the fire right here in our community,” said Tamar.
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