Russian journalist sells Nobel Peace Prize for Ukrainian children

What’s the price of peace?

That question could be partially answered Monday night when Russian journalist Dmitry Muratov auctions off his Nobel Peace Prize medal. The proceeds will go directly to UNICEF in its efforts to help children displaced by the war in Ukraine.

Muratov, awarded the gold medal in October 2021, helped found the independent Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta and was the publication’s editor-in-chief when it shut down in March amid the Kremlin’s clampdown on journalists and public dissent in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

It was Muratov’s idea to auction off his prize, having already announced he was donating the accompanying $500,000 cash award to charity. The idea of the donation, he said, “is to give the children refugees a chance for a future.”

In an interview with The Associated Press, Muratov said he was particularly concerned about children who have been orphaned because of the conflict in Ukraine.

“We want to return their future,” he said.

He added that it’s important international sanctions levied against Russia do not prevent humanitarian aid, such as medicine for rare diseases and bone marrow transplants, from reaching those in need.

“It has to become a beginning of a flash mob as an example to follow so people auction their valuable possessions to help Ukrainians,” Muratov said in a video released by Heritage Auctions, which is handling the sale but not taking any share of the proceeds.

Muratov shared the Nobel Peace Prize last year with journalist Maria Ressa of the Philippines.

The two journalists, who each received their own medals, were honored for their battles to preserve free speech in their respective countries, despite coming under attack by harassment, their governments and even death threats.

Muratov has been highly critical of Russia’s 2014 annexation of Crimea and the war launched in February that has caused nearly 5 million Ukrainians to flee to other countries for safety, creating the largest humanitarian crisis in Europe since World War II.

The Nobel Peace Prize, won last October by Russian journalist Dmitri A. Muratov, will be offered at auction, Monday, June 20, 2022, with proceeds going to help children displaced by the war in Ukraine.
The Nobel Peace Prize, won last October by Russian journalist Dmitry A. Muratov, will be offered at auction, Monday, June 20, 2022, with proceeds going to help children displaced by the war in Ukraine.
AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File

Independent journalists in Russia have come under scrutiny by the Kremlin, if not outright targets of the government. Since Putin came into power more than two decades ago, nearly two dozen journalists have been killed, including at least four who had worked for Muratov’s newspaper.

In April, Muratov said he was attacked with red paint while aboard a Russian train.

Muratov left Russia for Western Europe on Thursday to begin his trip to New York City, where live bidding will begin Monday afternoon.

Online bids began June 1 to coincide with the International Children’s Day observance. Monday’s live bidding falls on World Refugee Day.

As of early Monday morning, the high bid was $550,000. The purchase price is expected to spiral upward, possibly into the millions.

“It’s a very bespoke deal,” said Joshua Benesh, the chief strategy officer for Heritage Auctions. “Not everyone in the world has a Nobel Prize to auction and not every day of the week that there’s a Nobel Prize crossing the auction block.”

Since its inception in 1901, there have been nearly 1,000 recipients of the Nobel Prizes honoring achievements in physics, chemistry, physiology or medicine, literature and the advancement of peace.

The most ever paid for a Nobel Prize medal was in 2014, when James Watson, whose co-discovery of the structure of DNA earned him a Nobel Prize in 1962, sold his medal for $4.76 million. Three years later, the family of his co-recipient, Francis Crick, received $2.27 million in bidding run by Heritage Auctions, the same company that is auctioning off Muratov’s medal.

Melted down, the 175 grams of 23-karat gold contained in Muratov’s medal would be worth about $10,000.

The ongoing war and international humanitarian efforts to alleviate the suffering of those affected in Ukraine are bound to stoke interest, Benesh said, adding it’s hard to predict how much someone would be willing to pay for the medal.

“I think there’s certainly going to be some excitement Monday,” Benesh said. “It’s it’s such a unique item being sold under unique circumstances … a significant act of generosity, and such a significant humanitarian crisis.”

Muratov and Heritage officials said even those out of the bidding can still help by donating directly to UNICEF.

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Missouri men charged in black-market fireworks explosion that killed 4

Two Missouri men are facing murder charges after a home near St. Louis exploded Friday, killing four people – including three teens – who were assembling black-market fireworks in a garage. 

Terrell Cooks, 37, and Seneca Mahan, 43, are each charged with three counts of second-degree murder and several other charges in Friday’s explosion near Black Jack, about a 30-minute drive north of St. Louis. They were charged before a fourth victim died Saturday.

St. Louis County prosecutors say Cooks and Mahan made fireworks and directed younger people on how to load the canisters and attach a fuse for lighting. They would then sell the fireworks to others, despite neither having a license to make or sell fireworks.  

Investigators have been identified as Travell Eason, 16; Christopher Jones, 17; Damario Cooks, 18; and William Jones, 21. 

Friday’s powerful blast shook other homes and blew out neighbors’ windows. Authorities said a 12-year-old child was also injured in the explosion, but the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that police could not provide details Sunday about how many others were still hospitalized.

Court documents say Cooks admitted that he and Mahan made explosive devices designed to make a loud bang and bright flash. Investigators saw Cooks moving boxes of chemicals used to make explosives to his vehicle after Friday’s explosion, and they found large quantities of “completed explosive weapons and components to manufacture them” when they searched a home and other vehicles connected to Cooks. 

The blast was so powerful it shook other homes and blew out neighbors' windows.
The blast was so powerful it shook other homes and blew out neighbors’ windows.
Christian Gooden/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP

Cooks and Martin are being held on a $350,000 cash-only bond. It wasn’t immediately clear if they had retained attorneys who could speak on their behalf. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Man says U-Haul with mother’s ashes inside stolen

An auto thief stole a U-Haul being rented by a man that contained the ashes of the victim’s mother and grandmother early Saturday in Kansas.

Jared D’Amato told Fox4 the inconceivable crime took place after he stopped at a Best Western Premier in Kansas City Friday night to get some rest before continuing his cross-county move from Florida to Colorado.

When he woke up, he realized the U-Haul he parked outside the hotel — along with all his belongings inside — was missing, according to local news channels.

“It’s just like when you’re watching the news and you see a tornado or hurricane wipe away someone’s house and they lose all of their possessions and their belongings — it just feels like that,” D’Amato told Fox4.

Hotel surveillance video shows someone driving off in the rented truck at around 3:15 a.m. Saturday, followed by a second vehicle, KMBC reported.

D’Amato said his mother died a little more than a year ago. He’s now pleading for help getting what little he had left of her back.

“You can take anything, my tools anything of value but please for the love of god can you please leave my mother’s ashes, my grandmother’s ashes, my photos, it’s all I have left of her,” he told Fox4.

He’s hoping someone will spot the U-Haul and call police.

The vehicle has an Arizona license plate with the number AG64189 and a blue mammoth decal on the side, according to KMBC.

“I just never thought this would happen to me,” D’Amato said. “It’s the worst thing imaginable.”

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Active-duty soldier shot and killed at house party in Washington

An active-duty soldier was shot and killed during a house party in Washington state Saturday.

US Army Sgt. Emmett Moore, 22, was shot dead by another partygoer at the gathering inside a home in Parkland, the Pierce County Sheriff’s Office said.

Officers were called to the home just after 6 p.m. and found Moore inside the home on 112th Street South with a gunshot wound. Officers attempted first aid, but were unable to save him.

Moore, originally from East Point, Georgia, was stationed at Joint Base Lewis McCord in Washington. The base confirmed his death in a statement, according to KIRO 7 News.

“It is with a heavy heart that we mourn the loss of Sgt. Moore,” Lt. Col. John Tisserand, the 1-14 CAV battalion commander, said. “This is an extremely difficult time for the Warhorse family. Our primary mission now is taking care of the family members of our fallen soldier.”

Detectives are investigating what led up to the shooting. The suspect fled the party and no arrests were made, police said.

Neighbors near the home said they heard what they thought were fireworks — until police showed up.

“We were having a barbecue, then we heard like three or four [shots], which we thought were fireworks,” Sandra Kinney told KIRO 7 News. “Then, all the cops came.”

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Youth basketball coach accused of sexually assaulting a player

A youth basketball coach in Riverside, California, is facing accusations of sexually assaulting one of his players. 

Jamien Nicholas Lovell Jackson, 41, committed sexual assault against one of the female players he was coaching for a travel basketball league last year, according to the Riverside Police Department. 

Police arrested Jackson on Thursday and booked into the Robert Presley Detention Center. He’s charged with lewd and lascivious acts on a minor, child annoyance, and sending harmful matter to a minor. 

Court records indicate he was released from custody Friday on $55,000 bail. 

Police told FOX 11 that Jackson had been associated with girls’ youth basketball and sports photography in the Inland Empire area for several years. It’s unknown whether there were any other victims. 

Anyone with information is being asked to contact Detective Edward Vazquez at 951-353-7136.

It wasn’t immediately clear if he had retained an attorney who could speak on his behalf. Jackson’s next court appearance is scheduled for August 19 at the Riverside Hall of Justice. 

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Ex-guerilla rebel Gustavo Petro wins runoff to be Colombia’s 1st leftist president

Former rebel Gustavo Petro narrowly won a runoff election over a political outsider millionaire Sunday, ushering in a new era of politics for Colombia by becoming the country’s first leftist president.

Petro, a senator in his third attempt to win the presidency, got 50.48% of the votes, while real estate magnate Rodolfo Hernández had 47.26%, with almost all ballots counted, according to results released by election authorities.

Petro’s victory underlined a drastic change in presidential politics for a country that has long marginalized the left for its perceived association with the armed conflict. Petro himself was once a rebel with the now-defunct M-19 movement and was granted amnesty after being jailed for his involvement with the group.

“Today is a day of celebration for the people. Let them celebrate the first popular victory,” Petro tweeted. “May so many sufferings be cushioned in the joy that today floods the heart of the Homeland.”

Petro issued a call for unity during his victory speech and extended an olive branch to some of his harshest critics, saying all members of the opposition will be welcomed at the presidential palace “to discuss the problems of Colombia.”

“From this government that is beginning there will never be political persecution or legal persecution, there will only be respect and dialogue,” he said, adding that he will listen to not only those who have raised arms but also to “that silent majority of peasants, Indigenous people, women, youth.”

Outgoing conservative President Iván Duque congratulated Petro shortly after results were announced, and Hernández quickly conceded his defeat.

Former rebel Gustavo Petro, left, his wife Veronica Alcocer, back center, and his running mate Francia Marquez, celebrate before supporters after winning a runoff presidential election.
Former rebel Gustavo Petro, left, his wife Veronica Alcocer, back center, and his running mate Francia Marquez, celebrate before supporters after winning a runoff presidential election.
AP Photo/Fernando Vergara

“I accept the result, as it should be, if we want our institutions to be firm,” Hernández said in a video on social media. “I sincerely hope that this decision is beneficial for everyone.”

Colombia also elected its first Black woman to be vice president. Petro’s running mate, Francia Márquez, is a lawyer and environmental leader whose opposition to illegal mining has resulted in threats and a grenade attack in 2019.

The vote came amid widespread discontent over rising inequality, inflation and violence — factors that led voters in the election’s first round last month to turn their backs on long-governing centrist and right-leaning politicians and choose two outsiders in Latin America’s third-most populous nation.

Petro’s showing was the latest leftist political victory in Latin America fueled by voters’ desire for change. Chile, Peru and Honduras elected leftist presidents in 2021, and in Brazil, former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva is leading the polls for this year’s presidential election.

“What I do think it shows is that the strategy of fear, hate and stigmatization towards the left no longer works as a policy to win voters,” said Elizabeth Dickinson, senior analyst for Colombia at the firm International Crisis Group.

Confetti explode over a screen showing photos of presidential candidate Gustavo Petro, left, and his running mate Francia Marquez after they won a runoff election at their election night headquarters in Bogota, Colombia.
Confetti explode over a screen showing photos of presidential candidate Gustavo Petro, left, and his running mate Francia Marquez after they won a runoff election at their election night headquarters in Bogota, Colombia.
AP Photo/Fernando Vergara

But the results were an immediate reason to fret for some voters whose closest reference to a leftist government is the troubled neighboring Venezuela.

“We hope that Mr. Gustavo Petro complies with what was said in his government plan, that he leads this country to greatness, which we need so much, and that (he) ends corruption,” said Karin Ardila García, a Hernández supporter in the north-central city of Bucaramanga. “That he does not lead to communism, to socialism, to a war where they continue to kill us in Colombia. … (H)e does not lead us to another Venezuela, Cuba, Argentina, Chile.”

About 21.6 million of the 39 million eligible voters cast a ballot Sunday. Abstentionism has been above 40% in every presidential election since 1990.

Petro, 62, will be officially declared winner after a formal count that will take a few days. Historically, the preliminary results have coincided with the final ones.

Several heads of state congratulated Petro on Sunday. So did a fierce critic, former President Álvaro Uribe, who remains a central figure in Colombia’s politics.

Polls ahead of the runoff had indicated Petro and Hernández — both former mayors — were in a tight race since they topped four other candidates in the initial May 29 election. Neither got enough votes to win outright and headed into the runoff.

Petro won 40% of the votes in the initial round and Hernández 28%, but the difference quickly narrowed as Hernández began to attract so-called anti-Petrista voters.

Petro has proposed ambitious pension, tax, health and agricultural reforms and changes to how Colombia fights drug cartels and other armed groups. But he will have a tough time delivering on his promises as he does not have a majority in Congress, which is key to carrying out reforms.

“The people who do support him have very high hopes, and they are probably going to be disappointed pretty quickly when he can’t move things right away,” said Adam Isacson, an expert on Colombia at the Washington Office on Latin America think tank.

A supporter celebrates after former leftist rebel Gustavo Petro won a runoff presidential election in Cali, Colombia.
A supporter celebrates after former leftist rebel Gustavo Petro won a runoff presidential election in Cali, Colombia.
AP Photo/Andres Quintero

“I think you might find a situation where he either has to strike some deals and give up a lot of his programs just to get some things passed or the whole country could be gridlocked,” Isacson added.

Petro is willing to resume diplomatic relations with Venezuela, which were halted in 2019. He also wants to make changes to Colombia’s relations with the United States by seeking a renegotiation of a free trade agreement and new solutions in the fight against drug trafficking.

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in a statement that the Biden administration looks forward to working with Petro.

Hernández, who made his money in real estate, is not affiliated with any major political party and rejected alliances. His austere campaign, waged mostly on TikTok and other social media platforms, was self-financed and based mostly on a fight against corruption, which he blames for poverty and the loss of state resources that could be used on social programs.

Polls say most Colombians believe the country is heading in the wrong direction and disapprove of Duque, who was not eligible to seek reelection. The pandemic set back the country’s anti-poverty efforts by at least a decade. Official figures show that 39% of Colombia’s lived on less than $89 a month last year.

The rejection of politics as usual “is a reflection of the fact that the people are fed up with the same people as always,” said Nataly Amezquita, a 26-year-old civil engineer waiting to vote. “We have to create greater social change. Many people in the country aren’t in the best condition.”

But even the two outsider candidates left her cold. She said she would cast a blank ballot: “I don’t like either of the two candidates. … Neither of them seems like a good person to me.”

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Blinken says US looks forward to working with new Colombian President Petro

U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken congratulated Colombia on holding a free and fair election and said he was looking forward to working with leftist Gustavo Petro, who has vowed profound social and economic change, on winning the presidency.

“I congratulate the people of Colombia for making their voices heard in a free and fair presidential election,” said Blinken in a statement issued by the State Department.

“We look forward to working with President-Elect Petro to further strengthen the U.S.-Colombia relationship and move our nations toward a better future,” he said.

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Yankees’ Isiah Kiner-Falefa nursing tight left hamstring

TORONTO — When the Yankees didn’t put Isiah Kiner-Falefa in the field in the bottom of the eighth or use him to run for Giancarlo Stanton down by a run in the top of the ninth of their 10-9 loss to the Blue Jays on Sunday, it was clear there was something wrong with the shortstop.

Kiner-Falefa is dealing with tightness in his left hamstring the past couple days and Aaron Boone said he was only going to use him in an emergency situation.

He could be back in the lineup as soon as Monday at Tampa Bay.

Kiner-Falefa said he felt the tightness earlier in the series while running to first base.

“We decided it was best to take it slow,’’ Kiner-Falefa said. “That way it’s just a couple days or one day [missed].”

He said he had a similar issue in 2020 with the Rangers after the first game of the year, missed a game and then played every game the rest of the season.

Isiah Kiner-Falefa
Isiah Kiner-Falefa is experiencing tightness in his left hamstring.
Corey Sipkin for the NY POST

On Sunday, he hoped he’d make it in at some point.

“I was trying to secretly run back here and do stuff, just because I saw Gleyber going out there,’’ Kiner-Falefa said. “I felt like I kind of let the team down in a way today, just because we couldn’t make the switches possible.”


Kyle Higashioka is trying to put his ugly start to the season at the plate behind him.

After not homering in his first 34 games of the year, the catcher has gone deep four times in his last four games.

He led off the top of the sixth with a shot to left.

“I’m just trying to see good pitches to hit and put good swings on them,’’ Higashioka said. “Lately, I’ve been able to square the ball up more.”

He called the improvement the result of “a long process since the beginning of the year.

“I had a cold streak and you lose a little confidence,’’ Higashioka said. “You start searching and have to rein yourself back in and know who you are as a hitter. For me, it’s regaining confidence.”

But the fact the homer came in a loss in which the pitching staff gave up 10 runs for the first time this season negated the impact of the hit.

“To me, keeping runs off the board is more important,’’ Higashioka said. “Today, the homer didn’t really matter.”


With the Yankees trying to tie the game in the top of the eighth, Boone sent Jose Trevino to pinch hit for Joey Gallo against left-hander Tim Mayza.

It came after Anthony Rizzo homered against Mayza and Marwin Gonzalez singled.

While Trevino has hit well since joining the Yankees this season — and Gallo’s struggles as a Yankee are well-known — it was still striking to see the move play out, given the types of offensive players they are.

But Boone said he made the switch because of how tough Mayza is on lefties.

“He’s unique,’’ Boone said of Mayza, who has held left-handed batters to an OPS of .349 this year. “He’s as tough as they get, left-on-left.”

Boone said he would have stayed with Gallo if Gonzalez hadn’t reached base because of Gallo’s power threat, but with the runner on first, went to Trevino in an effort to prolong the inning. Trevino walked to get Mayza out of the game, but Jordan Romano got DJ LeMahieu and Aaron Judge to end the threat.

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Welcome to the Recession, Thank You Democrats

One of the most popular definitions of recession was coined by economist Julius Shiskin in 1974. In his view, two consecutive economic quarters of negative gross domestic product (GDP) growth meant the country was in a recession. 

Sadly, based on this description, America is on the verge of entering a recession. In the first quarter of 2022, our nation’s economy contracted by 1.5%. As we approach the end of the second quarter, the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta just estimated that there will be a 0% growth. If we fall just one tenth of a percent, it is officially a recession. 

It certainly feels like the country is entering a recession. Inflation is at a forty-year high at 8.6%, as gasoline prices exceeded $5.00 per gallon this week, reaching historic records. 

This is severely impacting the financial well-being of the American people. Since wage growth is not keeping up with the soaring inflation rates, real average weekly earnings are falling. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in the year ending May 2022, real average weekly earnings dropped 3.9%. This was also caused by a 0.9% decline in the average work week 

This troubling economic situation is leading to a 0.3% decline in consumer spending in May and a plunging level of consumer sentiment to an all-time low. This report has been conducted by the University of Michigan since 1952. The latest rating of 50.2 was significantly less than the previous record low of 51.7 recorded in May of 1980 during a deep recession. Of the consumers surveyed for the report, an astounding 46% blamed inflation for their negative economic outlook. 

To combat inflation, the Federal Reserve raised its benchmark interest rate by .75%, the largest increase since 1994. While this move will hopefully quell inflation, it will result in higher mortgage rates, which will negatively impact the real estate industry. 

It will also lead to higher interest rates on credit card debt, at a time when these unpaid balances are increasing. Since Americans are falling further behind economically and cannot pay their bills due to inflation and soaring prices for gasoline, more charges are being placed on credit cards.

There are even more economic problems such as supply chain issues that are still resulting from the aftermath of the pandemic. Shoppers are noticing that grocery store shelves are not full, as there have been shortages of important merchandise such as baby formula and feminine care products. 

With a string of fires and accidents at food processing plants this year and reports of enormous numbers of deaths of cattle in Kansas due to the heat wave, the prospect of food shortages in the future cannot be disregarded. 

The answer from President Joe Biden and members of his administration has been to focus on other issues such as the war in Ukraine, gun control, or the January 6th hearings. When the administration finally decided to discuss inflation and our economic woes, the answer was to double down on the “Green New Deal” rhetoric and encourage Americans to purchase electric vehicles. Of course, the problem is that electric vehicles are awfully expensive and there are not enough charging stations in the country. 

Instead of allowing more drilling in the United States and restarting the Keystone XL pipeline, Biden has been releasing a disturbing amount of crude oil from our Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR). He plans to release one million barrels of oil per day for six months. In May, the SPR reported the lowest level since 1987 with 538 million barrels remaining. 

Biden will be traveling to Saudi Arabia next month to supposedly discuss a range of issues, but, of course, the main reason is to plead with the authoritarian regime to increase their oil production. The irony of the visit is that Biden would prefer a country with limited environmental standards to drill for more oil, while rejecting increased drilling in the United States, the country with the best environmental standards in the world. 

This week, Biden continued his self-defeating energy policies by blasting oil companies for not producing enough at their refineries. He threatened to take emergency action to force their output to increase. 

In response, oil company executives encouraged Biden to stop hampering their ability to do business. Chevron lambasted the administration for imposing “obstacles to our industry delivering energy resources the world needs.”

These obstacles were implemented by the Biden administration to satisfy the demands of a radical left-wing group pushing a set of policies to combat climate change. Even though Americans rate problems such as inflation as much more important, to the top officials in the Biden administration, combating climate change is their number one goal. 

The result is the economic catastrophe that the country is facing. When President Biden took office, the inflation rate was a very manageable 1.4%. Today, it is more than 600% higher, while wages have shown only modest growth. 

On inauguration day 2021, the average price of gasoline in the country was only $2.39 per gallon. It has more than doubled in the seventeen months of the Biden administration. This skyrocketing price negatively impacts truckers, commuters and travelers looking to enjoy a summer vacation this year. 

On the final day of the Trump administration, the country’s economy was coming back from the depths of the pandemic. Inflation and gasoline prices were low, interest rates were very manageable and steady job growth was occurring. 

Unfortunately, Biden’s far-left  economic policies included an “American Rescue Plan” that cost $1.9 trillion and was funded by printing money that added to our already staggering federal debt. This ill-advised legislation, along with the President’s “green” energy policies, combined to create the economic nightmare our country is facing. This agenda and not Vladimir Putin’s war in Ukraine is responsible for today’s horrible economic conditions. 

The administration inherited a strong economic recovery but produced a recession. It was an avoidable economic catastrophe manufactured by President Joe Biden and the Democratic Party. 

Jeff Crouere is a native New Orleanian and his award-winning program, “Ringside Politics,” airs weekdays nationally on Real America’s Voice TV Network, AmericasVoice.Newsfrom 6-7 a.m. CT and from 7-11 a.m. CT on WGSO 990-AM & Wgso.com. He is a political columnist, the author of America’s Last Chance and provides regular commentaries on the Jeff Crouere YouTube channel and on Crouere.net. For more information, email him at jcrouere@gmail.com
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15-year-old boy dead, 3 injured in Washington, DC festival shooting

A 15-year-old boy was killed and three others, including a police officer, suffered gunshot wounds during a shooting at a music festival in Washington, DC Sunday evening.

Gunfire erupted on a street corner as crowds began to disperse from the “advocacy” festival called Moechella — which officers had shut down moments earlier over dangerous conditions.

The event was advertised as a peaceful demonstration at 14th and U Street celebrating Juneteenth, but police described a chaotic scene where several illegal guns were recovered over the course of two-and-a-half hours.

“When you have large gatherings in a dense area, all it takes is one person introducing a gun to the situation that makes it deadly,” Metropolitan Police Department Chief Robert Contee said.

“In this case, unfortunately a 15-year-old lost his life.”

The teenager was killed, while the officer was shot in his lower extremity and is being treated at an area hospital. The two other adults injured were also rushed to the hospital and are in stable condition, according to the police chief.

Before shots rang out and struck the four victims, a fight broke out among attendees, multiple unrelated illegal firearms were recovered and several people were injured when an unknown disturbance cause people to scatter and create a stampede, Contee said.

At that point, police shut down the event because it became dangerous. As officers and emergency personnel were on the scene aiding those injured during the stampede, someone in the crowd began firing a handgun, striking the 15-year-old, the police officer and two other adults.

Police also recovered a firearm off one of the victims, but don’t believe it was used during the shooting. There was no exchange of fire between the gunman and the victim, nor the gunman and police.

Contee said Mochella was an “unpermitted event” and all of the chaos happened between 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. with more than 100 officers responding to the festival.

He said multiple illegal firearms were confiscated by police during and after the event.

“Right before the shooting occurred, our officers recovered an illegal firearm… Shortly before I walked down here, our officers recovered another illegal firearm … and they were chasing another person with an illegal firearm in the area,” Contee said during a press conference at the scene.

The firearm that killed the teen and injured the other victims has not been recovered.

“I think there’s a theme that you see here,” the police chief continued. “Illegal firearms in the hands of people who should not have them make events like this unsafe for people who just want to enjoy the beautiful weather, who want to enjoy Father’s Day and want to enjoy our city.”

The suspect in the shooting remains at large.

Contee and Washington, DC Mayor Muriel Bowser, who also spoke at the press conference, said the event organizers should be held accountable for the dangerous situation.

“We have a child that was killed today at an event that did not have any proper planning for the number of people who were here,” Bowser said. “Even with our police managing a crowd on site, somebody used a gun and a child is dead. We need some accountability here.”

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