5 Shot at Crab Festival

5 Shot at Crab Festival, On April 27, 2013 at  approximately 8:00 P.M, LCSO Deputies responded to shots fired on County Road  318 (a/k/a NE 40th    Street) east of the City of Williston.   The subsequent investigation revealed that 5 victims had been shot.  One of the victims, BARRY BARNEY (36 years of  age), died from his injuries.  Two  females and two males were wounded during the gunfire.  The extent of their injuries is unknown at  this time.  No suspects are currently in  custody.

The shooting occurred during  a large annual gathering of people labeled as “Crab Festival”.  This event attracted an estimated crowd of  10,000 people this year.  The event is  unsanctioned and no  individuals or organizations take credit for hosting the event.  The Festival is advertised underground  primarily through social media.  While it  is called the “Crab Festival”, it is actually a series of “Hip Hop” style  street parties.  Violent incidents have  been reported at the Festival in the past.   The event draws numerous vendors and large crowds to the neighborhoods  east of Williston.  The vendors, large  crowds and numbers of vehicles force the closing of many of the roads,  including County Road 318.

A large contingent of Levy  County Deputies was working the Festival and heard the gunshots.  Deputies and Emergency Medical personnel  responded immediately on foot and in vehicles to assist the injured.  The Levy County Department of Public Safety  had pre-staged ambulances and a Medical helicopter in the area for the  Festival.  The large crowds made it  impossible for ambulances to reach the wounded.   Despite the large crowds walking and dancing in the roadway, Deputies  and EMS personnel were able to evacuate the  victims in law enforcement and private vehicles.   Barney was taken to a local hospital by air,  but died enroute to the hospital.

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