NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - A man is shot dead on Bourbon Street early Saturday morning, amongst a crowd of thousands in town for Bayou Classic. A witness recounts what happened when the gunshots rang out.
"There was about five shots, and the whole area about two seconds later, just cleared out," a Bourbon Street employee explained.
The crime scene tape is now gone from the 300 block of Bourbon Street where around 1:30 Saturday morning, the 26-year-old victim was shot.
The Orleans Parish Coroner later identified the victim as Brandon Robinson.
"People were trying to barricade the doors, seriously, because everybody is terrified, nobody knows why people are shooting," the witness said.
A number of people who work on Bourbon witnessed the pandemonium. Police say surveillance video shows what happened.
"One the suspects is seen punching the victim and another suspect is seen pulling out a gun and firing the weapon several times, striking the victim," NOPD Supt. Michael Harrison explained.
Robinson is a local man who police say got into a fight with a group of people. They don't believe his murder had anything to do with the Bayou Classic, an annual football game drawing thousands to New Orleans. Fans and other tourists in town say they're shocked.
"We were just minutes away from being right here at this location, I had no idea, no idea," Paul Walton said.
Some expressed serious reservations about the tourist attraction.
Chantelle Paul says, "I'm not planning on being out here when it gets dark."
Others say they feel safe.
Pointing at a group of passing NOPD officers, Jessica Tate says, "Why would I worry? Look at this, the cops are right here."
In fact, the police department is fully staffed this holiday weekend.
Harrison explains, "At the time of the shooting we had 25 officers specifically assigned to Bourbon Street we had an additional 50 officers on horseback."
There were also state troopers and sheriff's deputies on patrol Saturday morning. Supt. Harrison says the response was immediate. Now, investigators need the public's help to catch the two suspects.
Police are in the process of locating and interviewing witnesses, as there were thousands out on Bourbon at the time of the shooting.