At least six people were killed and around two dozen others were ‘seriously injured’ in a shooting during the Highland Park Independence Day parade Monday morning, officials confirmed, urging residents to continue to “shelter in place” while the shooter is still on the run.

The shooting occurred at 10:14 a.m. in the Central Avenue and 2nd Street area of ​​downtown Highland Park during the city’s July 4 parade, authorities said.

The shooter, who has not yet been identified, was described by Highland Park Police as a white male between the ages of 18 and 20 with a small build and “longer” black hair. He wears a white or blue T-shirt, depending on Highland Park Police Cmdr. Chris O’Neill.

“We’re asking everyone to stay indoors,” the Lake County Sheriff said. Christopher Covelli. “Stay alert at this time. This person has not identified themselves. By all means, at this point, it appears to be completely random.”

Covelli said the shooter fired into the parade with a rifle from a rooftop. He said police were working to locate the man.

In a video posted on social media by parade participants showing the moment of the shooting, 11 shots were heard, followed by a pause, then 23 more shots.

“Investigators are working very, very quickly to try to identify who this person is and to try to figure out where he is,” Covelli said.

Anyone with photos or video of the incident is urged to report it to the police.

“Everyone in the Highland Park area is urged to report suspicious activity by calling 911 or Highland Park Police at 847-432-7730,” Covelli said. “To report any late information about this incident, the FBI has set up a hotline at 800-CALL-FBI.”

On Monday afternoon, Metra’s Union Pacific North line through Highland Park was not running.

At around 2 p.m., members of the SWAT team were seen escorting people from the businesses where they were staying on site.

NorthShore Highland Park Hospital said in a statement that the facility was treating 26 people, five of whom were transported to NorthShore Evanston Hospital.

“A large majority were shot and injured as a result of the chaos that ensued during the parade,” NorthShore Highland Park Hospital said.

“We mobilized quickly and within 30 minutes of the event, 20 additional doctors (surgeons, trauma surgeons, orthopedic surgeons, etc.) and nurses and other support staff were present. We have social workers and social workers available on site to assist family and friends of injured persons.”

Those looking to reunite with family members after the parade are asked to visit the Highland Park Reunification Center at the Highland Park Police Department at 1677 Old Deerfield Road.

Illinois Governor JB Pritzker asked for prayers for the families of those who died and for those injured in the shooting.

“There are no words for the kind of monster that stalks and shoots at a crowd of families with children celebrating a holiday with their community,” Pritzker said in a statement. “There are no words for the kind of evil that robs our neighbors of their hopes, their dreams, their future. There are no words I can offer to ease the pain of those they leave behind. Know that our state mourns with you, that MK and I mourn with you.”

Dr. David Baum, who attended the parade, helped treat those injured in the shooting.

“The bodies that I saw, it was not an image that someone who is not a doctor would have trouble processing,” Dr. Baum said.

“There were people who were immediately killed with horrific gunshot wounds.”

A large police presence from the state and neighboring departments in suburban Chicago was seen along the parade route.

“This is an active incident,” the town of Highland Park wrote in a statement. “All individuals are advised to shelter in place. Law enforcement is looking for the suspect; evidence of a firearm has been found. Multiple law enforcement officers are responding and securing a perimeter around downtown Highland Park.”

Independence Day parades and events in the northern suburbs were canceled after the shooting.

“Due to a tragic mass shooting that took place earlier this morning in Highland Park, the Town of Evanston will be canceling this year’s 4th of July parade and celebrations effective immediately.”

Evanston has also closed its swimming beaches “following this morning’s tragic shooting in Highland Park”.

Larry Bloom, who was in the area when the shooting began, said at first onlookers thought the “pop” sound was part of the parade.

“You heard like a ‘pop, pop, pop’ and I think everyone thought maybe it was a display on one of the tanks and then it opened up,” Bloom said.

“I was screaming and people were screaming,” Bloom said. “They were freaking out and they were scattering and I, you know, we didn’t know that. You know, it was right above us.”

The public is urged to avoid downtown Highland Park as police continue to respond to the shooting “in the area of ​​the Independence Day Parade route,” the Lake County Sheriff said on Twitter.

“STAY OUT OF THE AREA – allow law enforcement and first responders to do their job,” the sheriff said.

“Illinois State Police are currently assisting Highland Park PD with an active shooting situation that occurred during the Highland Park Parade,” police tweeted. “The public is advised to avoid the area of ​​Central Ave and 2nd St. in Highland Park.”

This is breaking news. Check back as details emerge.