Acadiana Community Rallies to Support UL Student Who was Shot While Working in Downtown Lafayette
After a shooting in Downtown Lafayette erupted early Sunday morning, an employee of a local bar is currently recovering from surgery to repair a bullet wound he suffered in the incident. A GoFundMe has been set up to help offset medical expenses, as this University of Louisiana student certainly did not expect to be in this situation when he went to work on Saturday.
Early Sunday morning, authorities in Downtown Lafayette responded to the sound of shots ringing out near the intersection of Jefferson and East Congress Streets. Reports say that witnesses heard "around twenty shots" being fired. Once the tense situation cooled down, authorities were left with eleven wounded victims and one suspect.
The suspect, who has been identified, is currently facing 11 counts of attempted first-degree murder and one count of illegal use of weapons. The 11 victims in the shooting were all transported to local hospitals and were treated for non-life threatening injuries.
See a photo from a Downtown Lafayette building below that shows the aftermath of the gunfire.
While I hope that all victims involved in the shooting have a speedy recovery, one of those victims was an employee of a Downtown establishment that is located immediately near where the shooting took place.
Community Rallies to Support UL Student Who was Shot in Downtown Lafayette
Landon Pistoljevic is a Junior at the University of Louisiana and an employee of the Jefferson Street Pub in Downtown Lafayette. Originally from Washington state, Pistoljevic spent summers down in Louisiana visiting his mother's family. So when it came time for him to make a decision on where he would attend college, Lafayette was an easy choice.
Pistoljevic was working as a bouncer at the side-entrance of Jefferson Street Pub at the time of the shooting, according to his manager. After shots starting ringing out, Pistoljevic ran inside of the bar to begin helping as best as he could throughout the chaos.
This is when a bullet went through the window of the bar and struck Pistoljevic in his hip.
Pistoljevic has undergone surgery to repair his hip after being wounded by the shot and is slowly, but surely recovering. A GoFundMe has been set up by one of Pistoljevic's fraternity brothers and has a goal of $7,500 to cover the medical expenses.
Some of the 'Words of Support' coming from the GoFundMe read as follows...
"Landon is one of the best people I know"
"Stay strong~ you have support from many as you travel this path to health"
"Hope you get better!"
The GoFundMe currently sits at $4,105 of its $7,500 goal, but Pistoljevic's friends are hoping for a final push to make sure that he does not have to incur any costs related to this awful incident.
It is truly unfortunate that once again, the incredible celebration of Festival International's Saturday event has ended with a Downtown shooting in the wee-hours of a Sunday morning. This is not the first time that I have been around for such an incident and it certainly paints a bad light on the times when large events are happening in the Downtown district. At this point, there are some who don't feel safe working or playing in Downtown Lafayette with these types of incidents occurring.
What hits home the most for me in this scenario is that this shooting could've affected myself or any of my friends. In fact, Pistoljevic's job at Jefferson Street Pub was the first job I ever held in Downtown Lafayette. I know that while this job is most certainly a good way to make some extra money while going to school, the ultimate responsibility of a bouncer at a bar is to ensure the safety of the business' staff as well as all of its patrons.
Pistoljevic took this responsibility to heart, as in the most tense situation - he was there to help protect his place of work and all of those present.
Pistoljevic most certainly did not expect to be caught up in gunfire when he went to work on Saturday, but nevertheless he is now recovering from surgery due to a gunshot wound. So with that being said, if you are able to donate to the GoFundMe that will help offset Pistoljevic's medical expenses - please click HERE to make your contribution.