Keymarion Hall, a 15-year-old Flagler County resident, was shot and wounded late Saturday night during an event attended by some 400 people, called “Bunnell Hood Affair” at The Place, a restaurant-bar at 411 South State Street in Bunnell. The event was held without a permit or the knowledge of city authorities, and in apparent violation of a June 26 state order shutting down bars and on-premise dispensation of alcohol due to the coronavirus emergency.
“We’ve communicated with the Department of Business and Professional Regulations because of the violation of the size and alcohol being served on the premise, so DPBPR actually regulates that,” Bunnell City Manager Alvin Jackson said today. The city is also investigating the organization of the event for its violation of a city ordinance requiring all events of a certain size or larger to secure a permit first.
Jackson, who described The Place as a bar, said the shooting was precisely the sort of violence permitting was designed to prevent.
“This is the very reason, because the special even says if you have an x number of people, 100 people, they need to pay for a law enforcement presence,” Jackson said. “It would require planning, if there are street closures that need to occur, parking that would be required. That’s the reason for completing the permit so we can determine if it’s an event we can accommodate or wanted to accommodate. If we deemed it to be unsafe, then we probably wouldn’t issue the permit.”
The event had been advertised on Facebook with a poster featuring the well-known local artist who goes by the name Fatass, among others (see below), but the poster had left the location of the event as “TBA,” or to be announced. City Police Chief Tom Foster, who had a copy of the poster, said that was by design–an attempt to keep authorities from finding out the location of the event ahead of time and shutting it down. But A narrative of the event issued by Foster’s office this afternoon stated police were monitoring the scene.
The artist, Troy Reddin, wrote FlaglerLive that he had nothing to do with the event or the poster. “I did not create nor had control of who created a flier with my image stating there would be an event,” he wrote in an email. “There was never an event to attend nor can I control the people that gather in my name. My character has been questioned and I work hard to support my community and give back. The incident that occurred were terrible & I would never condone this type of behavior or violence especially on children.”
The shooting took place just before midnight, according to Foster. People were partying outside, in the area of 45 Martin Luther King Boulevard and Southern Table, the restaurant at 501 South State Street. A vehicle pulled off Martin Luther King Boulevard onto South State Street, “peeling out at a high rate of speed,” according to the police statement. Police pulled over the vehicle a mile away. But that’s when the shooting occurred back at the event.
Bunnell police “immediately responded back to the area of the event and found a juvenile victim at the intersection of S. Church and MLK Blvd.,” the statement read. “The victim was suffering from a gunshot wound to the buttocks and hip. The BPD officers rendered first aid until relieved by Flagler County Rescue. The victim was transported to Arnold Palmer Hospital, Orlando.” Foster said the boy, whose identity he did not release, was in stable condition and was expected to be released from the hospital today.
A blood splatter was located on the southern concrete median of the intersection of South State Street and Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue.
“There were several, several shots fired,” a witness who asked not to be identified told FlaglerLive. The witness described the scene as “out of control.”
“There was a large amount of pedestrians in the area as well as vehicle traffic,” a sheriff’s incident report states. “Some pedestrians were running and some were walking as well as cars appearing to be in a hurry to leave the area.” The deputy added: “While at this intersection I hear more gun shots being fire from the area of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue and S. Railroad Street. I appear as if the shots were fired in the air by a pedestrian as the crowd in the area did not run or flee.”
The police statement corroborates the description, describing the shooting as “multiple firearms discharged and/or used during this incident to include one of .223/5.56 caliber.”
Bunnell police and sheriff’s deputies secured the scene and detectives from both agencies responded, along with the sheriff’s crime scene investigations unit. DNA was collected from from blood trails and cartridge cases.
What appears to be a YouTube video of the event, called Bunnell Block Party 2K20, was uploaded earlier today (see below). It shows hundreds of people milling outside the bar, drinking and dancing, no thoughts of social distancing and only the rare appearance of a person wearing a mask. Bars of course have been ordered closed by the governor, and other establishments are not . The video on at least two occasions shows a Flagler County Sheriff’s Office patrol car driving by, its emergency lights on, and a law enforcement vehicle with its lights on stationary in the distance. The video doesn’t show more than people partying, showing off their cars or themselves. There is no hint of an incident.
The city manager and his staff had been working with the city attorney today to determine what violations of the city’s special event ordinance took place and what fine to impose.
Last night a message went up on the victim’s Facebook page: “Speedy Recovery Keymarion Hall.”
Chief Tom Foster is asking anyone with information on this shooting to come forward and contact Detective Kyle Totten at 386-437-7508 or Crime Stoppers TIPS 888-277-8477.