The annual ZombiCon convention in Fort Myers, Florida turned deadly on Saturday night after a gunman opened fire, killing one person and injuring five.
According to the Associated Press, the person who suffered the fatal gunshot wound is 20-year-old local college football player Expavious Tyrell Taylor. Authorities have yet to release a possible motive for the shooting, but are asking any eyewitnesses to come forward with information that could help catch the culprit.
Lt. Victor Medico of the Fort Myers PD hopes someone can help piece this tragic story together, saying, “A lot of witnesses down here, there were a lot of people taking pictures, videos with their cellphone. Anything that could help with this investigation would be greatly appreciated.”
The convention’s site describes the gathering as a massive zombie-themed charity street fest in downtown Fort Myers. ZombiCon also features over 30 live performances spread out over five stages. Already in its eighth year, the annual convention draws more than 20,000 people, most of whom are dressed in zombie attire.
Given the circumstances, a lot of people didn’t know if the gunshots were legit, or part of the show. “[I] heard gunshots right in front of me. Saw people running and my mind was everywhere. It was so scary. We ran, then we were like wait…was that real?” Haley Delmonte of Naples told WBBH-TV.
The victim’s family is understandably distraught. Says his uncle, Ephraim Washington, “I said it couldn’t have been him because he ain’t there, it took me two hours to get it together that I was wrong.”
The founder of ZombiCon, Janet DeMarco, sent her condolences to the family and has faith that the Fort Myers Police Department will bring the killer to justice.