'Dispute' led to shooting that wounded 8 outside SC nightclub, chief says

Columbia Police Chief Skip Holbrook gives an update on the shooting that wounded eight people.

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WLTX) -- Columbia police say they believe some type of fight led to a shooting in the Vista that left eight people wounded by gunfire.

Columbia Police Chief Skip Holbrook said Saturday afternoon that they believe the shooting was two opposing parties that got into a gunfight, and they're looking for multiple suspects.

At around 2:12 a.m. Saturday, officers got a call of shots fired near the intersection of Lady and Park Street outside the Empire Supper Club. Holbrook said the shots came outside the business toward the back.

A total of eight people were hurt: four women and two men. The victims range in age from 22 to 52, with most of them being in their 20s.

Several of the victims were not the intended targets of the gunmen. At this point, Holbrook said he is not sure if gangs are involved. 

"This is a bad situation we have got to recognize that gun crime can't be tolerated, Holbrook said. "It's not just a police issue. We have to take a hold of this as a community and do something about it."

Officers have not yet arrested any suspects, but they are questioning witnesses. They've also found two vehicles of interest, and are looking for two more: a new model black Ford Mustang with a paper tag, and a BMW. Police believe passengers in those cars may have information that can help.

They continue to review videotape, and there may be other pictures released. 

Holbrook said he has declared the site of the shooting, Empire Supper Club, a nuisance, and have revoked its business license. The business is now padlocked.

Holbrook said they have had problems with the business in the past. He said the owner was at the club when the shooting happened. 

It had been open for 18 months.

Anyone with information should call Crimestoppers at 1-888-CRIME-SC

© 2017 WLTX-TV


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