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April Clare Welsh
19 June 2023, 12:22

Two dead, three injured following shooting at overflow campgrounds of Beyond Wonderland festival, Washington

The shooting occurred on campgrounds half a mile from the festival site at the Gorge Amphitheatre

Two dead, three injured following shooting at overflow campgrounds of Beyond Wonderland festival, Washington

Two people have died and three have been left injured after a shooting on Saturday night (17th June) at the overflow campgrounds of electronic music festival, Beyond Wonderland, which took place at the Gorge Amphitheatre in Quincy, Washington.

At around 8:20 PM on Saturday night, a report was made of an "active shooter" on campgrounds — where many of the festival's 27,500 attendees stay — according to a local police spokesman for Grant County Sheriff's Office, Kyle Foreman. The camping area where the incident took place is located roughly half a mile from the venue's entrance.

Sets continued inside the amphitheatre both during and after the incident, with Beyond Wonderland tweeting at the time: “Please avoid the Gorge Gate H campgrounds area as it is closed due to an incident that has been handled by local authorities. There is no current danger to festival goers or the campgrounds”.

Police “pursued (and) closed-in on the suspect”, who had reportedly "walked away" from the scene before continuing "to shoot randomly into the crowd". The suspect, who is among the three people injured, was detained and arrested at around 22:52 PM PDT, according to the Grant County Sheriff's Office's Facebook page.

The latest police update from the sherriff's office, shared on Sunday (18th June) at 2:30 PM local time, said that officials "have made notifications to the families of all of the victims of last night's shooting" and that "the identities of the victims will be released in the coming days".

The second day of the festival was subsequently cancelled by promoters, Insomiac. On Sunday morning, Beyond Wonderland tweeted: “Due to the incident that took place in the overflow camping area last night, we regret to inform you that day 2 of Beyond Wonderland has been canceled. We would like to express our sincere appreciation to the local authorities and staff who acted quickly to manage the situation. Our heartfelt thoughts and condolences go out to the family, friends, and all those affected by this tragic event.”

Insomniac Events founder and CEO Pasquale Rotella shared a statement to Instagram earlier today (19th June), in which he extend his "heartfelt thoughts and condolences to the family, friends, and loved ones of the victims" and explained that "the incident stemmed from an isolated situation that escalated, leading the assailant to flee the area".

He added: "Many have questioned why the festival continued during and after the incident. We made the decision to keep the festival open at the request of law enforcement once it became evident that there was no ongoing threat to the safety of attendees. This was also done to ensure that the majority of attendees stayed away from the campground area where the incident took place. Our staff worked in close coordination with local authorities to secure the area, while also preserving it for investigators to conduct their work in a smaller, isolated section”.

Read the full statement below.