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Published: Tuesday, 8/7/2012

Detroit woman opens fire on other passengers

6 wounded in shootout after Detroit River cruise


DETROIT -- Police were searching Monday for a woman who wounded six passengers as they disembarked from a late-night riverboat cruise on the Detroit River.

The incident along a dock in downtown Detroit sparked a shootout about 1 a.m. Monday as another person retrieved a gun from a nearby car and fired at the woman and her boyfriend, the cruise operator told the Detroit News.

CJC Cruises chief executive John Chamberlain said police investigators told him the woman who instigated the shooting was one of 500 passengers on the popular Detroit Princess and had phoned her boyfriend from the boat after an onboard argument between two families.

"One woman called her boyfriend and told him to bring a gun down to the dock," Mr. Chamberlain told the Detroit News. "She got off the boat, got the gun from the boyfriend, and starting shooting at the other family as they got off the boat.

"She really went kind of crazy and then pulled the trigger a lot of times."

In addition to the six passengers shot, the woman's boyfriend was wounded in the back, apparently by the person who returned fire. He was in serious condition at a local hospital.

The six passengers' wounds were described as minor.

The shooting stemmed from "some sort of altercation," Detroit police Sgt. Alan Quinn said.

A Detroit radio station was hosting an event on one of the boat's decks. The top deck featured a DJ employed by the cruise company, according to the Detroit Free Press.

The station's assistant promotions director told the Free Press he was leaving the boat as the shooting started.

"It was real scary because people started running in every direction," Keith Gillespie said.

When the shooting ended, Mr. Gillespie said he and others saw three victims lying on the grass.

"After I realized there were more people down, I called [police] and told them ... we needed more ambulances," he said.

Mr. Chamberlain said that passengers are checked for weapons as they come aboard the riverboat. "There were 500 passengers on that cruise; 499 good people and one bad one," he said.

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