Three injured after medical emergency at Hamilton performance mistaken for active shooter
Three attendees of a Friday night performance of Hamilton in San Francisco were injured after a medical emergency was allegedly mistaken for an active shooter situation.
According to a series of tweets from the San Francisco Fire Department, an automated external defibrillator (AED) was pulled when an individual suffered a medical emergency during the showing at The Orpheum Theatre. The AED also triggered an alarm during the performance that resulted in “confusion and an un-organized rapid exit of the theater.”
Journalist Joe Khalil, who was present for the showing, tweeted the “mass panic” was fueled when “members of the audience started screaming and running.” He noted, “shouts of ‘gun’ could be heard.”
A representative for the San Francisco Police Department told EW it appeared the triggered alarm coincided with the sounds of gunfire from the production, at which point the audience began “self-evacuating.” A rep for The Orpheum Theatre could not confirm this detail at this time.
“During this process, 3 additional adults were injured, one with a broken leg, and 2 with moderate injuries,” the SFFD account tweeted.
The rep further confirmed to EW that the initial woman needing medical assistance, whose pulse returned with CPR and paramedics, was transported to the hospital with life-threatening conditions. She remains in critical condition, though an update on the conditions of the other injured was not known at the time.
In addition to releasing a tweet on the incident, the Shorenstein Hays Nederlander (SHN), the theatrical entertainment company from the Bay Area, offered a statement to EW.
“The producers of Hamilton and SHN are reviewing the events that brought an abrupt end to the performance in San Francisco last night and resulted in alarm and confusion for the audience at the SHN Orpheum Theatre,” it reads. “Uncertainty in the auditorium about a medical emergency taking place near the end of the show spread quickly and prompted the upset. Along with SHN, the owners of the Orpheum, we remain dedicated to protecting the safety of our audiences and our own company members in every city where Hamilton plays. Patrons at last night’s performance are in the process of being contacted and invited to return to see Hamilton at the Orpheum.”
This article has been updated with a statement from the SHN.