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Fights, gunfire, and one dead on opening day of Six Flags Over Georgia

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David Aaro
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

Police exchanged gunfire with a suspect outside Six Flags Over Georgia on Saturday evening after a large “unruly crowd” allegedly caused chaos inside the park on its opening day for the season, authorities said.

At about 6:15 p.m., Cobb police said they assisted Six Flags security with the crowd that had swelled to between 500 to 600 guests who were “running through the park and fighting.” Officers and security personnel followed them out of the park and onto Six Flags Parkway near South Service Road.

“As officers followed the crowd out, ensuring they left the property, an unknown number of suspects fired at officers,” police said. “An officer returned fire, striking one of the suspects.”

The injured person was given medical aid on scene before being taken to Grady Memorial Hospital, according to authorities. Their identity was not released, and police have not said if they face charges.

In a statement, the park said the shooting did not occur on its property or parking lot.

“This took place on South Service Road that is not owned or operated by Six Flags,” the statement read. “However, we join our community and the Atlanta region in our commitment to safety and security. We won’t put up with that type of activity here.”

It was the second year in a row that fighting was reported inside the park on the first day of the season. Last March, a parkgoer, Justin Clayton, told Channel 2 Action News that he and his family saw multiple groups of teenagers get into fights. In a statement released to the media after that incident, Six Flags said it removed the young people who engaged in fights.

“Unfortunately, several groups of young people decided to engage in inappropriate behavior in more than one area of the park,” the statement added. “Their actions disrupted the park experience for our guests and violated our park policies. … We have absolutely no tolerance for inappropriate behavior. Safety for our guests, and our team members, is our foremost priority. Unruly behavior will not be tolerated.”

Police said the GBI was notified and will take over the investigation into Saturday’s gunfire.

— Please return to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution for updates.

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