PRINCE GEORGE COUNTY, Va (WRIC) – A Prince George father and his 6-year-old son were at Nationals Park sitting behind the Padres dugout when a shooting happened right outside the park Saturday night.
The father told 8News as soon as he heard four to five loud bangs and saw people running from the concessions back to their seats yelling to “get down”, he covered his son on the ground for safety.
At the bottom of the sixth inning is when D.C. Metropolitan Police said gunfire was exchanged between people in two cars, injuring three people.
Padres fan and Prince George resident Cody Stewart was in the park with his son Elijah Saturday night.
They bought the tickets for Elijah’s first Major League Baseball game ever, just days after his sixth birthday.
“For it to be my son’s first baseball game, and, you know, I don’t want that to leave on him where he doesn’t want to go to any more sporting events,” Stewart said. “It was a scary situation.”
Stewart said they were sitting in section 116 enjoying the game when he heard those loud bangs.
He covered his son and saw two players, Fernando Tatís, Jr. and Manny Machado opening up a gate for fans to take cover in the dugout.
“I was thinking, do I pick up my son and just run down there? You know, I didn’t know what to do,” he said.
Stewart covered his son for safety for around 10 to 15 minutes, which he said felt like forever.
Before, during and after an announcement was made that the shooting was happening outside the stadium, asking people to stay inside, Stewart said people, police officers and security guards were scattering.
“At that moment, you know, you’re thinking, I mean is there somebody lined up in all these sections shooting? You know, you don’t know what’s going on and with things that have happened, as far as, you know, mass shootings going on in our country, the first thing that came in my head is like, am I really living this right now?” he told 8News Sunday.
There were only two exits open for fans there at the park, at centerfield and right field. Stewart said he and his son were safely able to get to their truck quickly because they parked near one of those exits.