Philadelphia.- Four students were injured in a shooting near a high school in West Philadelphia on Wednesday, just after school ended for the Thanksgiving break, authorities said.
The students, two 15-year-old girls and two 16-year-old boys, were taken to hospitals and are in stable condition, John Stanford, first deputy commissioner of the Philadelphia Police Department, said at a news conference.
The shooting occurred shortly after 11:30 a.m. outside a hair salon and a block from Overbrook High School. Deputy Commissioner Stanford said a group of students were standing outside the classroom when someone inside a silver van fired at them.
Police did not name the victims. A 15-year-old girl suffered gunshot wounds to her left shoulder and left thigh, and the other 15-year-old girl suffered gunshot wounds to her left shoulder, police said in a statement. A 16-year-old boy was shot in the left hand and had a scratch wound to his face, and the other 16-year-old boy suffered a gunshot wound to his right leg.
Police said no arrests had been made and no weapons had been recovered. Deputy Commissioner Stanford said he was too early in the investigation to know if the students had been attacked.
“Just another incident of gun violence in our city,” he said at the news conference.
Gun violence in Philadelphia has been particularly high this year. As of August, more than 1,400 people in the city had been shot, a higher number than in the much larger cities of New York and Los Angeles. Officials are scrambling to respond to the number of guns on the streets. For every illegal gun seized by police in Philadelphia between 1999 and 2019, about three guns were legally bought or sold, according to a city report released this year.