Rocks Off just got off the phone with our man Shea Serrano, reporting from the Trae Day afterparty at Galleria-area nightclub the Roxy. He found an eyewitness - or at least someone who was close enough to the action Wednesday to have the living shit scared out of him - to Wednesday evening's shootings at TSU that left several people injured and taken to various Houston-area hospitals.
Serrano reports that photographer Adarrius "Swift" Joseph was standing in the parking lot of TSU Stadium, near the stage, when two parties of an undetermined amount of people began arguing. Joseph couldn't tell what they were arguing about, he says, but it was fairly obvious they had been arguing before. Joseph got out his video camera and began preparing to record when things got "real." Instead of completing his thought, Serrano says, Joseph made a face "like when you raise your eyebrows and shake your head." Bad news, in other words.
Understandably, Swift turned to get the hell out of there as fast as he could. He made it about 10-15 feet away when he heard a bottle break behind him. Then came the gunshots. "A bunch," he told Serrano. "It sounded like an automatic." Swift took off running and was thus unable to relay any further details.
Meanwhile, at the afterparty, Serrano says most of the people he has talked to thus far were not even at Trae Day, and those who were are less than impressed with the evening's events. "People are acting like that shit happens all the time," he says. "Like, 'Ah well, it's no big deal.'" Strippers keep strippin', sippers keep sippin' - life in the big city, folks.
At the moment, Rocks Off has heard that between four and six unidentified victims have been taken to Ben Taub and Memorial Hermann Hospitals. Fox 26 is quoting TSU officials as saying six people were hit with non-life-threatening injuries, and that early police speculation is that the shootings were gang-related. Channel 13 also has the number of wounded at six, all between 14 and 21 years old (which means finding out their names will be next to impossible). Channel 11 says the shots came from a burgundy Oldsmobile.
What really happened? Rocks Off has left messages and/or spoken with officials at Ben Taub and HPD and found out squat. Obviously, it's too soon for anyone, even people who were there and the authorities, to say for certain. Except that a bunch of knuckleheads ruined what was an otherwise positive event with some real ignorant behavior.
Keep the Houston Press Free... Since we started the Houston Press, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Houston, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Houston with no paywalls.