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Suspect in early morning Ybor City shooting charged with second-degree murder

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Posted at 10:40 AM, Oct 29, 2023

TAMPA, Fla. — In a press conference Sunday afternoon, Tampa Police Chief Lee Bercaw said the suspect in a shooting in Ybor City early Sunday morning has been charged with second-degree murder.

22-year-old Tyrell Phillips is in custody after two people died, one was seriously injured, and 15 others were shot following a fight that ended with gunshots during Halloween festivities in Ybor City.

According to Bercaw officers responded to the shooting in Tampa just before 3 a.m. in the Ybor City area.

Police say the fight occurred in an area with several bars and clubs, and there were large numbers of late-night partiers in the area at the time, Bercaw said.

Police were not immediately sure if the people involved in the fight were inside any of the bars before the shooting.

A video posted online shows people in Halloween costumes drinking and talking on the street when shots ring out, creating a stampede.

Some people toppled over metal tables and took cover behind them.

Video from the aftermath showed police officers treating several people lying wounded on the ground.

A volley of about a dozen shots rang out followed a few seconds later by a volley of about eight shots.

“It was a disturbance or a fight between two groups. And in this fight between two groups we had hundreds of innocent people involved that were in the way,” Bercaw said.

He did not provide details of the injuries suffered by the victims taken to area hospitals.

One of the victims was identified by his father as 14-year-old Elijah Wilson.

His father, Emmitt Wilson recounted seeing his son's body on the ground.

"It's painful, man, to see your child laying there," Emmitt Wilson told ABC Action News. "And there's nothing I can do but stand behind the yellow tape and just watch them take his body away. I can't go see him. This is my last time seeing him. It's, it's hard."

Police said one suspect turned himself in, and investigators believe there were at least two shooters involved, Bercaw said.

Police are still investigating the reason for the fight between the two groups, he said.

Officers were at the scene at the time of the shooting but none were injured, Bercaw said.

Investigators asked anyone with information that could assist in the investigation to call Tampa PD at 813-231-6130 or contact Crime Stoppers of Tampa Bay at 1-800-873-TIPS (8477).