“Why wouldn’t you expect it at this point?” Witness rattled but not surprised by Oakdale theater shooting

29 June 2022

OAKDALE, Minn. (WCCO) — A gunman is on the run after opening fire inside a suburban Twin Cities movie theater.

The shooting happened around 10 p.m. Tuesday at the Marcus Cinema in Oakdale. A 23-year-old man from Hugo was hurt and is expected to recover. Investigators don’t believe the shooting was random. 

Robert Baril, a comedian, was inside the movie theater with his wife. They were enjoying a date night watching the new Elvis biopic when shots rang out. 

“On the one hand, it’s unexpected,” he said. “On the other hand, it’s like, why wouldn’t you expect it at this point? [Shootings] happen at schools, churches. “

Gun violence is happening more often in Minnesota. Crime analysts are reporting 78 homicides this year across Minnesota, that’s keeping pace with the record 201 killings last year. 

Meanwhile, Hennepin Healthcare in Minneapolis is reporting a 50% jump in how often they treat “penetrating trauma wounds,” which include gunshots. 

While Baril says he’ll go back to a theater soon, he’ll probably choose to sit by an aisle or an exit. 

“It’s this eerie, unsettling feeling I suppose,” he said. “What are you going to do aside from just not leaving your home?” 

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Author: Jonah Kaplan

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