St. Louisans often joke about whether a loud boom is "gunshots or fireworks," but there was little guesswork needed to identify the sounds that interrupted St. Louis Mayor Tishaura Jones on Friday at a press conference as she spoke about gun violence.
Held in Dutchtown, the press conference featured Jones and Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas. Caught on video by multiple reporters, Jones was in the middle of remarking on the city's gun violence when she paused for the sound of what appeared to be four gunshots crashing nearby.
"Well, isn't that wonderful," Jones said after a moment.
Kansas City mayor @QuintonLucasKC & @saintlouismayor were taking questions following a roundtable on gun violence when we heard what sounded like gun shots in Dutchtown. @KMOV pic.twitter.com/ktTWZHNHev— Deion Broxton (@DeionBroxton) October 29, 2021
In footage posted by KMOV reporter Deion Broxton, Jones addressed the gunshots and her restrained reaction, explaining that it was nothing new to her or the residents of St. Louis' north side.
"My son and I fall asleep to the lullaby of gunshots in the distance every night, because I'm the first mayor in over twenty years to be born, raised and still live in north St. Louis Louis," she said. "It's unfortunate. Yes, I heard it, but I didn't flinch. Because, I guess, it's part of my life now."
Casey Nolan, a reporter with KSDK, tweeted that a member of Cure Violence — which fields teams of non-police "violence interrupters" in St. Louis communities threatened by gun crime — was on the scene of the press conference.
"We saw Brother El with Cure Violence get on the phone and call his interrupter evening shift into work early right after the shots were fired," Nolan tweeted.
We saw Brother El with Cure Violence get on the phone and call his interrupter evening shift into work early right after the shots were fired. https://t.co/tRvEqAL2v1— Casey Nolen (@CaseyNolen) October 29, 2021
Kansas City's mayor Lucas also addressed the gunshots, tweeting, "The sound of gunshots is a regular occurrence in too many areas of my city as well."
His tweet continued, "Today’s shots reminded us of the reality so many of our sisters, brothers, and babies face each day and the need for change."
The sound of gunshots is a regular occurrence in too many areas of my city as well; something I grew to know from youth. Today’s shots reminded us of the reality so many of our sisters, brothers, and babies face each day and the need for change. https://t.co/ri6aH0vti3— Mayor Q (@QuintonLucasKC) October 29, 2021
Follow Danny Wicentowski on Twitter at @D_Towski. E-mail the author at [email protected]