Norfolk men shot while streaming video on Facebook Live

Three men shot while streaming on Facebook Live
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Three men shot while streaming on Facebook Live 01:32

Story highlights

  • One man is in critical condition, two others have improved since being hospitalized Tuesday
  • Video shows man lurch back in seat, sound of many gunshots

(CNN)Three men in Norfolk, Virginia, sit in a car, smoking and singing along with rap lyrics. One of the men uses his smartphone to stream video of the fun to Facebook.

Now the video is evidence in a triple shooting. Police said Wednesday the video shows the shooting of three men in their late 20s, one of whom is in critical condition. The other two victims are "doing better" after initially being hospitalized Tuesday with life-threatening wounds, the department said in a news release.
    One of the men in the car had the camera facing him when he was shot.
    The recording made Tuesday evening marks the second time in a week Facebook Live has given users a glimpse into the aftermath of a shooting.
    Last week, a Minnesota woman streamed her fiancé's death, the video beginning after he was shot during a police stop. That video, coupled with video of a Louisiana man's shooting death by police, prompted nationwide protests. The Minnesota video also sparked discussion about Facebook and when videos should be taken down from the site, which has more than 1 billion users.

    Should video be removed?

    According to Facebook, reviewers consider the "context and degree" of a live or recorded video. "For instance, if a person witnessed a shooting, and used Facebook Live to raise awareness or find the shooter, we would allow it," Facebook said. "However, if someone shared the same video to mock the victim or celebrate the shooting, we would remove the video."
    One of the victims is in critical condition. The other two are 'doing better.'
    Spokeswoman Andrea Saul said Wednesday that Facebook doesn't comment on specific cases. The video recorded in Norfolk remains on the site. It had more than 480,000 views in the 24 hours after the incident.
    Norfolk police will use the video as part of their investigation. CNN sent some follow-up questions to Norfolk police but didn't get an immediate response.
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    'Call the ambulance please'

    In the video, the man who is streaming is in the passenger seat of the car, which appears to be parked.
    The driver appears to be texting while another man in the back seat is rapping along with the music.
    There is no indication the men see anyone suspicious approaching the car. The man on the video is into his music when the first of what sounds like 30 gunshots begins. His head whips back quickly as he apparently is shot and the phone falls onto the floor of the car.
    The shooting lasts a little more than 20 seconds and then there is quiet.
    Their car was riddled with bullet holes.
    It is broken when someone says, "Nah, call the ambulance please."
    Someone calls 911 but there is a hold message saying all dispatchers are busy. It is unclear if one of the victims is making the 911 call.
    A man says, "We need an ambulance. Three of us shot."
    Another man with a measured voice comes on the scene, telling the victims to stay calm.
    "Stay calm, stay relaxed," he says three times.
    He tells the victims to stay awake and look at him.
    "I got you," he says. "... It's going to be all right."
    The man continues to speak to the victims, telling them help is on the way.

    Paramedics arrive

    At times a repeated buzzing is heard as if someone is calling a phone in the car.
    The video continues for more than hour. In it the voices of officers and paramedics responding to the scene can be heard. They talk to the men who are shot and describe the wounds to other emergency responders.
    One sees five wounds. Another emergency worker describes one man having a wound to the temple that "took out the nasal passage." The victim also has been hit in the right shoulder and right arm, a medic says.
    Later, after a second ambulance arrives, a paramedic tells one of the men: "Sorry about this. Your buddy is more shot up than you are. He's going second. You're going to be third."
    The third victim is put on a gurney and taken to the hospital about 20 minutes after the shooting.
    Police appealed Wednesday for the public's help.