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Tulsa police look to identify people responsible for pellet gun shootings

Posted at 12:05 PM, Mar 17, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-21 16:40:32-04

TULSA, Okla. — The Tulsa Police Department is looking into several calls about shootings with pellet guns around town, an officer said Thursday.

2 News Oklahoma reached out after someone fired at a 2 News Oklahoma's Katie Keleher and a 2 News photographer near the southwest corner of Reconciliation Way and Main Street in downtown Tulsa just before 10 Wednesday night.

The Tulsa Police Department posted video showing the people they think are responsible on Monday.

“We picked that area because as journalists, we think about our safety first, and I felt safe in that spot. It’s well-lit and there was a lot of people around," she said.

Keleher heard a loud commotion behind her, "All of a sudden, I felt something hitting my back and I just froze. Just little pellets and I just remember my jaw dropping and I just froze in fear."

She felt herself getting pelted over and over.

“About 5 hit my back and I could see them hitting on either side of me, and my photographer, Marisa, was in front of me. Thankfully, she wasn’t hit by anything," she said.

Keleher had on her station jacket. Police said it protected the reporter from being injured by the pellets.

“I was wearing one of our 2 news Oklahoma jackets and you can see it’s a puffy coat and has this fur lining in the back and so it’s really padded," she said.

Police say they found pellets on the ground near where it happened and are looking into traffic and business cameras in the area.

Police got another call around the same time in the same area where a man said he was hit by what turned out to be pellets. A third incident happened around the same time a few days before on 2nd Street near Cincinnati where a woman was hit three times in the chest, neck and chin.

On Thursday night police caught kids who shot a woman while she was shopping at a Reasor's near 41st and Yale.

Tulsa police say they have reason to believe that these incidents may have been recorded and could be part of a social media challenge but they do not think any specific group or person is being targeted for any reason. They're asking the public to be aware of their surroundings, especially in the downtown area.

Anyone with any information is asked to call Tulsa Crime Stoppers at 918-596-COPS. You can remain anonymous when calling. Please reference case 2022-012105.

Similar pellet gun-related shootings have been seen in other cities over the last few months, some reportedly related to social media challenges. Pasco County, Florida deputies reported "Orbeez" water beads being frozen and shot at people earlier this week. Police in Vernal, Utah arrested two people in February in connection with an "Orbeez" shooting that the teens responsible admitted to being a part of a TikTok challenge.

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