Last Updated on June 12, 2022
A stampede nearly broke out at the March for Our Lives gun control rally in Washington, D.C. over the weekend when attendees mistakenly believed there to be an active shooter on the scene. Amidst the confusion, attendees began fleeing the area around the Washington Monument, overrunning elderly demonstrators in the process. The false alarm quickly came to a close after an organizer grabbed the microphone, telling the crowd that there was “no issue.”
Video footage taken at Saturday’s March for Our Lives gun control rally in DC shows a crowd gathered around the Washington Monument beginning to suddenly flee the area in large numbers, reportedly under the belief that a mass shooter had arrived on the scene.
“We fight every day,” a speaker can be heard saying into a microphone on stage in the seconds before something triggered audience members to get up and run away. While the brief pandemonium unfolded, some attendees can be seen attempting to hop the barriers erected around the rally site, while others are shown running over the elderly in an effort to save themselves from the suspected active shooter, who did not exist.
“Oh my God!” members of the audience shouted as they ran from the direction of their protest and towards an open area opposite the Washington Monument.
“Do not run! Freeze! Do not run! There is no issue here!” a voice then yelled into the microphone, causing audience members to almost immediately snap back to reality and return to their protest as if nothing had ever happened.
— Andy Ngô 🏳️🌈 (@MrAndyNgo) June 12, 2022
While several corporate media reports issued in the aftermath of the false alarm have blamed the situation on a man – who has since been arrested – shouting “I have a gun” or “I am the gun” into the crowd, an on-the-scene interview with a gun control activist in attendance tells a different story.
“He said, ‘I am God – I am a music God,'” the rally attendee recounted, also telling the interviewer that the man appeared to have thrown an object into the crowd, which some attendees falsely believed to be a bomb.