YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — Police are investigating a mass shooting outside a bar on Youngtown’s lower west side where two people are confirmed dead and at least three more were wounded just after 2 a.m. Sunday morning.
There were dozens of casings in front of the Torch Club Bar & Grill at Salt Springs Road and Elberen Street as well as a parking lot two doors down, where a house was also struck by gunfire.
There was a four-car accident across the street from the bar that came after shots rang out.
A couple of blocks east, at the corner of Salt Springs Road and Greenwood Street, there was a two-car accident where one person died and another person went to the hospital. An investigator with the Mahoning County Coroner’s Office said a cause of death in the crash is pending an autopsy. He could not confirm if the shooting and the crash are related.
Seven hours after, YPD held a press conference to discuss the mass shooting. You can watch the full conference above.
“Now, let me point out that none of the shootings took place inside of the Torch Bar, but they stem from an incident which began there,” said Chief Carl Davis.
Detectives said there was some sort of argument that broke out in the area near the Torch Club and there was “an exchange of gunfire,” that saw three killed and three others wounded. Police investigated multiple scenes earlier with dozens of casings spread out.
They’re still trying to piece together what happened.
“There are at least three separate crime scenes that our Detective Bureau, our Crime Scene Unit and Accident Investigation Unit are currently investigating,” Davis said.
Two of the scenes were around the bar and the third was near the scene of a two-car accident, which happened after shots were fired, just down the road.
One person involved in the accident died.
It is not clear if any of the shooting victims were involved in the four-car accident.
When accident investigators were called out for the fatal accident a few blocks away, they said the victim in that crash was one of the shooting victims.
Investigators did say there have been a number of incidents from the bar in the past, but nothing similar to this.
“This is a complex investigation involving multiple scenes, numerous witnesses, six detectives and three crime scene unit personnel,” Davis said.
Police pulled over a dark SUV a couple blocks west of the club and detained the driver. There was also a person who was being detained in a cruiser, but it is not clear if he was the driver of the SUV.
A witness told First News that after the accident, one person fled from one of the vehicles where they were later met down the street by an ambulance.
Now, police are looking for as much help as they can get from the public.
“I think more eyes, social media, cell phone video, anything that you can share is very helpful,” said Mayor Tito Brown.
The city has now seen 11 homicides this year, as compared to 13 at this time last year. There have been 42 people shot and wounded this year, including all 12 homicide victims, as compared to 28 people shot at this time last year, which includes 12 of the 13 homicide victims.
For 2020, Youngstown recorded 98 gunshot victims, including 27 of 28 homicide victims. That was an increase of 40 over 2019, when 58 people were shot, including all 20 of that year’s homicide victims.