Shot fired at Boys and Girls Club

A shot was fired outside the Boys and Girls Club of Paris on Sunday evening during a charity basketball tournament.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Bryan Glass with the Boys and Girls Club of Red River Valley released a statement. It has been added to the story.

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Emotions ran high Sunday evening at a charity basketball tournament at the Boys and Girls Club of Red River Valley, where an argument between two players preceded a gunshot outside that is still under investigation by local law enforcement.

The roots of the incident began on the court, as two players began arguing after a hard foul, but it quickly escalated outside, event organizer Westley Martin said.

“We were about halfway through the tournament when the argument started on the court,” Martin said. “We have a zero tolerance policy at charity events, so we kicked them both out. Rather than leaving and going home, they wanted to continue the mess in the parking lot, and that’s what happened.

“If you know any crowd, they want to see the fight more than the game, so a lot of them left the gym to go to the parking lot, and that’s when the police came.”

According to the police report, someone pulled out a pistol and fired a shot. Paris Police Chief Bob Hundley said no one was struck.

Martin said neither of the players involved in the altercation were locals. One of the players involved was from Plano and the other was from Frisco, he said.

Hundley said all participants in the altercation fled by the time law enforcement arrived. The investigation is ongoing, and Hundley said officers are now reviewing surveillance video of the parking lot to get a clearer idea of what took place.

Paris EMS was on scene tending to a woman who had fallen and injured her elbow in the chaos, and she was transported to receive medical attention, according to Hundley. Another woman suffered a panic attack at the event, though Hundley said she was not transported.

The charity tournament was to raise money to purchase backpacks, and Martin said they decided to end the competition early after the incident.

In a statement Monday, Bryan Glass with the Boys and Girls Club said: "The safety and protection of the children we serve is always our number one priority. Boys & Girls Club of Red River Valley is aware of a serious incident that occurred outside one of our locations while the facility was being rented by a third party for an adult basketball tournament.

"Thankfully, no members were present in or around the building at the time, however, staff members were on site and responded by contacting law enforcement immediately. We are deeply alarmed and concerned by this incident and are cooperating fully with law enforcement in the investigation of this serious matter.

"Our organization is committed to the highest standards of ethical behavior and integrity and does not tolerate inappropriate or illegal activity on the part of any Club staff, volunteer, youth member or visitor. All policies are designed to ensure the maximum safety and protection of Club members and staff. We will continue to cooperate fully with law enforcement until their investigation is complete."

Tommy Culkin is a staff writer for The Paris News. He can be reached at 903-785-6972 or at tommy.culkin@theparisnews.com.

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