8 shot at lounge on Broad Street, 3 in critical condition

Published: Nov. 30, 2022 at 4:56 AM CST|Updated: Nov. 30, 2022 at 6:30 PM CST
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - Eight people were shot at a lounge on Broad Street overnight, authorities said.

Three people are in critical condition following the shooting at the VVS1 Hookah Lounge in the 500 block of Broad Street, according to Deputy Chief Franklin Fondel, spokesman for the Lake Charles Police Department.

One person is in custody, Fondel said. Police are investigating whether there were other shooters.

Police were called to the shooting at 1:35 a.m., Fondel said.

7News spoke with Van Ned, the owner of the lounge.

He said it all happened inside where everyone was having a great time until shots were fired, which sounded like fireworks erupting.

Ned told 7News with 8 security guards on staff, he believes weapons were brought in through the court yard where a tent was set up.

The tent is not typically there, Ned said. He said it may have obscured the view of the fence allowing someone to sneak weapons in.

He also tells 7News one of his security guards helped subdue a shooter.

Fondel said Acadian Ambulance transported one victim to a local hospital, Lake Charles patrol officers transported two and some victims were transported by private means to local hospitals.

Two victims have been treated and released and three are in stable condition.

Fondel asked anyone with any information to contact lead Detective Sgt. Kevin Hoover at (337) 491-1311.

Lake Charles Mayor Nic Hunter released the following statement:

“This morning’s shooting is saddening and disturbing. Acts of senseless violence in any community are always difficult to hear about, but when it happens in our City, it is a painful realization of the realities of the lack of value some place on human life. Solving issues with violence is never the answer.

I commend and thank the Officers with the Lake Charles Police Department and other agencies who responded this morning. I have the utmost confidence in the Department’s Investigations Division. I firmly believe whoever committed this act will be brought to justice. This type of activity cannot go unchecked.”

Lake Charles Police Chief Shawn Caldwell released the following statement:

“Responding to a shooting with one victim, much less eight, is something we as law enforcement hope to never have to do on shift. However, when violent acts of this nature do occur, our Officers stand ready to respond immediately.

I am proud of all first responders who responded to this call, particularly our Patrol Officers who personally transported victims to the hospital. Our Investigations Division is investigating this incident and will continue to do so until those responsible for this act of violence are held accountable.”