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Teen arrested in Kennywood Park shooting

by Samantha Davis-Friedman

A 15-year-old has been arrested for the Kennywood Park shooting on Sept. 24, 2022 that wounded three people, including two teenagers.

Kennywood Park shooting
Photo courtesy of Kennywood Park

Allegheny County and West Mifflin police said the teen is being charged as an adult with aggravated assault, reckless endangering, and firearms crimes for the shooting that occurred on the opening night of the park’s Phantom Fest.

At the time of the incident, park officials said the shooting followed an altercation between two groups of teenagers near the Musik Express ride, which authorities now say stemmed from an ongoing feud between the groups that led to other shootings in the nearby communities of Duquesne and Homestead. According to County Police Assistant Superintendent Victor Joseph, police have received 55 calls for shots fired in those areas.

“We all know that this is a serious problem,” Joseph said. “The people who live in these communities know how serious it is. People who have lost loved ones due to gun violence and incarceration know how devastating it is.”

Last week, investigators said two guns were fired at the Kennywood Park shooting, one by the teenager who was arrested (who himself was grazed on the thigh by a bullet). Authorities are still searching for a second suspect, which County Police Superintendent Christopher Kearns said is “most likely” also a juvenile.

Kearns said it’s still unclear how weapons got into the park, but investigators are considering the possibility that they were tossed over the park fence or carried by someone jumping the fence. As a result, the park trimmed trees along the perimeter to improve visibility and installed new floodlights and security cameras to cover the fence line.

On Oct. 6, 2022, Kennywood released the following statement:

We are thankful for the efforts of the Allegheny County Police Department to make an arrest and begin holding those responsible accountable for what happened that night.

Immediately following the shooting, Kennywood implemented enhanced security measures, including a more prominent police presence in the park, additional security along perimeter fences, new limits on bag sizes and masks covering faces, and requiring adult chaperones for all juveniles at all times during Fall Fest, which is scheduled to run until Oct. 30, 2022.

Click here for more information about Kennywood’s security enhancements.

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