LMPD :: Louisville Metro Police Department

Charges filed in Pegasus Parade shooting


The two 15-year-olds accused of opening fire along the Pegasus Parade route Thursday and wounding two now face assault and other charges.

It's not clear why two suspects fired their guns as crowds of families packed the sidewalks near Fourth Street and Broadway to watch the parade, But bullets struck a 17-year-old male as well as a 14-year-old girl, whom police said was not an intended target. Hundreds of others were packed in the general vicinity.

The 15-year-olds are each charged with two counts of assault and one count of tampering with physical evidence, possession of a handgun by a minor and receiving stolen property, said Louisville Metro police spokeswoman Alicia Smiley.

She said the stolen property charges stem from their alleged possession of the guns but declined to provide details on where the teens obtained the weapons, which were recovered.

Asked if any of those involved were tied to gangs, Smiley said, "We're not taking anything off the table."

The unidentified teens, who police said were apprehended 30 seconds after the shooting, are being held at Youth Detention Services.

Both victims were treated at the scene and taken to the University of Louisville Hospital with non life-threatening injuries, police said.

At a news conference hours after the gunfire, LMPD Chief Steve Conrad said Thursday marked the first shooting in the Pegasus Parade's 61-year history.

Police described the shooting as an isolated incident but one that is emblematic of the city's larger struggle with an increase in violent crime.

"This is probably one of the most blatant examples of the problems that we are dealing with," Conrad said.

The male victim and the two charged 15-year-olds knew each other, Conrad adding that there was "some problem" between the three.

Both the chief and Mayor Greg Fischer questioned how the two accused youths got their guns. Fischer denounced the act, saying "the streets of America are awash in guns" while calling on parents to take more responsibility for their children.

Conrad defended his decision to not halt the parade, saying that his officers were able to contain the crime scene on the north side of Broadway. Stopping the festivities would have created more confusion, he said.

"There was no reason to stop it and cause complications for an already complicated situation," Conrad said.