Deputies investigate fatal shooting down the street from school Halloween event

MCSO: Shooting did not happen at Saddlewood Elementary School

By Vanessa Araiza - Reporter, Troy Blevins - Graham Media Group

OCALA, Fla. - The Marion County Sheriff's Office is investigating a Friday night shooting that left an 18-year-old dead. Deputies said the shooting occurred down the street from an elementary school event.

Officials said the Sheriff's Office received a call around 6:24 p.m. for services regarding a shooting that occurred at Southwest 32nd Street and Southwest 43rd Court.

Officials said 18-year-old Brandon Hammett was shot and pronounced dead at a local hospital.

The suspects were still at large Friday night, officials said.

Multiple deputies, officers with the Ocala Police Department, Air One and K-9 responded, officials said.

Although the crime scene is located down the street from Saddlewood Elementary School, officials said the shooting did not happen at the school.

When the shooting occurred, the school was hosting its Safe Halloween event and about 1,200 people were in attendance, officials said. The attendees were sheltered in place in the school as a precaution while deputies continued their investigation.

Officials said the event attendees were released around 7:30 p.m.

News 6 spoke with a parent who was at the event with her kids. She said they were in a classroom for about 45 minutes. Once they knew the threat wasn't on campus, teachers were allowed to turn on movies for the kids and keep them entertained.

The Sheriff's Office asked for the community's patience as it worked to get people home and continue its investigation. People were asked to avoid the area.

Stay with News 6 and for updates on this story.

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