Chicago shooting: 2 women shot during White Sox game at Guaranteed Rate Field, police say

White Sox video shows activity in section 161, near left field

ByJohn Garcia, Christian Piekos, Evelyn Holmes, Tre Ward, and ABC7 Chicago Digital Team WLS logo
Sunday, August 27, 2023
2 women shot during White Sox game: Chicago police
Chicago police confirmed two women were wounded in a shooting at the White Sox game at Guaranteed Rate Field Friday night.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Two women were wounded in a shooting at Guaranteed Rate Field during the Friday night game between the White Sox and the Oakland Athletics, according to Chicago police.

A 42-year-old woman was shot in the leg and taken to the University of Chicago hospital in fair condition, police said. A 26-year-old woman suffered a graze wound to the abdomen, refusing medical treatment according to police.

New video released by the White Sox shows some fans in the bleachers appearing to look down at something, while others are unaware of what's going on. Fans can also be seen standing in their seats, waving towards White Sox staff, the video then ends. The Sox said the activity was in section 161, near left field.

The Chicago White Sox released video of a shooting incident that happened during Friday night's game against the Oakland Athletics at Guaranteed Rate Field.

Tom Miller, who attended the game, said he was sitting two rows behind where the shooting allegedly occurred. He said he didn't hear or see what happened, but moments later, a woman appeared to be bleeding from the leg. He said he believed two people, possibly three, suffered some sort of wound.

"It happened just two rows in front me, and there was no one in front of us. All of a sudden this lady just starts bleeding from the leg," Miller said. "There were at least two of 'em in a row that got hit, may be a third, but I know two for sure. And, all of a sudden, security was there, and they kicked us out."

He said security then came and ushered them away from their seats and up to section six. He said they stayed there for 45 minutes.

White Sox security guards were seen speaking to people shortly after the incident. Some attendees told ABC7 they believe the shooting may have started with an argument between two men, though police have not confirmed any of those details.

The investigation into the shooting continues as officials said there was never believed to be an active shooter at the ballpark. Police have not said if they recovered a weapon.

"How do you allow the game to continue, and not notify the fans about what had happened?" wondered Adam Luebbe, who attended the game.

On Saturday, White Sox Communications Vice President Scott Reifert said after determining, with police, that there wasn't an active threat, the game was allowed to continue.

"Initially, it presented as just a fan who needed first-aid. It was just a wound. No one understood whether it was a bullet or a gunshot. So, there was kind of this time delay as that person got treatment. Then, as they investigated a little more, we started to understand what may have happened," Reifert said. "It's not clear where the bullet came from. There are no reports of any gunshots in our ballpark."

The White Sox also released a statement overnight, writing, in part, "It is unclear to investigators whether the shots were fired from outside or inside the ballpark. The incident continues to be investigated by Area One detectives from the Chicago Police Department. While the police continue to investigate, White Sox security confirms that this incident did not involve an altercation of any kind."

How those two women were shot, despite metal detectors at each entrance, remains under investigation by police.

"I was like, 'How could this be happening? And, how did they get into the building?'" said Sox fan Pam Gonsch.

After the game, a message came up on the ballpark screen saying the post-show Vanilla Ice and Tone Loc concert was canceled "due to technical difficulties." On Saturday, White Sox officials said that concert was canceled not because of safety concerns, but to allow investigators inside the stadium while the lights were on and no the fans were out.

Vanilla Ice shared an apology to his fans on his Tik Tok page. "We were scheduled to perform at the White Sox game and at the end of the game there was a shooter, he said. "Nobody died but you know some nut job kind of ruined the night for everybody." Vanilla Ice went on to apologize to Chicago, Illinois and the entire baseball organization saying "they didn't deserve this."

Fans who had waited through the Sox brutal 12-4 loss to the Oakland A's were left angry and confused by the sudden cancellation and lack of information Friday night.

"There was supposed to be a free concert after the game. They came and announced right after the game that it had been canceled. They didn't give any information. Everyone started booing, going crazy, and saying derogatory things," said attendee Rod Moyers. "Then, about five minutes later, they put up a note on the screen saying it was canceled due to technical issues. Everyone booed. No one was leaving. Some people said they should storm the field. Then, the whole crowd started chanting, 'Sell the team!'"

Sox Park is in Alderwoman Nicole Lee's 11th Ward, who released a statement, saying, "As Alderman of this ward and as a fan who has attended many Sox games, I am shocked and sickened by what happened last night, and my heart goes out to the gunshot victims. I am in ongoing communication with both the Chicago Police Department and the White Sox organization, and it is my promise to our community and our city that we will get to the bottom of this."

Mayor Brandon Johnson also addressed the shooting while at two separate events this morning saying Chicago police is in full force at Saturday night's game, which the White Sox say is going on as scheduled.

"I understand it's under investigation right now," Johnson said. "The game is still scheduled for this evening, and the local police department is doing everything that they can within their power to make sure that we keep people safe."

Some Sox fans wondered whether they will be safe on Saturday night after Friday's shooting.

"Yes, I'm afraid but I can't live in fear," said Pam Gonsch.

Still, they poured into Guaranteed Rate Field for Saturday night's game.

"I'm sure the security is doing their job and if there was a threat, I think they would cancel the game," said Sox fan Casey Loven.

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