KANSAS CITY, Missouri - Police are investigating several reports of shots fired early Tuesday afternoon during a funeral for the cousin of a Mizzou basketball player who was caught in the middle of a rolling gunfight.
It happened at about 12:20 p.m. outside Macedonia Baptist Church, 2455 Benton Boulevard. According to reports, more that 400 mourners were attending the service.
Marion Denmon died last week after he was shot in the early-morning hours of Dec. 3 . He was the cousin of University of Missouri basketball player Marcus Denmon.
Police officials say that mourners were coming out of the church when suspects began shooting. Some witnesses at the scene claim that there was also shooting inside the church.
After hearing several witness accounts, Kansas City police believe the shooter or shooters were there to deliberately disrupt Denmon's funeral.
Police say there were reports of several shots fired, but they had not located a victim. One bystander reported an injury while running from the scene.
Benton Boulevard was closed at 25th Street while police were there investigating. Police don't know the total number of shooters, but did spot one running from the scene with a firearm.
Wheatley Elementary School at 2415 Agnes, approximately a block and a half from the shooting, was locked down, but was given an "All Clear" around 2:00 p.m.
According the Dave Reiter with the University of Missouri, Marcus Denmon was at the funeral, but was not injured during the incident and is on his way back to Columbia as of 1:45 p.m.
Macedonia Baptist Church released the following statement regarding the shots fired after the funeral service:
"Our hearts are heavy both from the senseless loss of yet another life in our community as well as the egregious outburst of violence after the funeral service today. We are grateful to God that by His grace no one was injured. Never before has anything of this nature occurred at Macedonia and our resolve to stay in and serve this community is unwavering. It is our hope that those responsible will realize the gravity of their actions and turn their lives around. Our community is crying out for a cease-fire and an end to the suffocation of its potential. Macedonia remains steadfast and immovable in its commitment to spread the gospel of Jesus Christ and to reach out to those who are hurting, hopeless, and lost. Please join us as we continue praying for and working in the vineyard of our great City." --- Yours in Christ, Pastor John L. Brooks, M. Div.