The incident took place in Norfolk, a waterfront city in southeastern Virginia, and was reported around midnight Saturday into early Sunday morning at a party in the upscale Killam Avenue.
According to Norfolk police, four women and three men were wounded in the gunfire, two of them later succumbing to their injuries at a hospital.
The slain individuals were identified as Zabre Miller, 25, and Angelia McKnight, 19.
Norfolk State University said many of the victims in the off-campus mass shooting that sent shockwaves across the city were students at the university, without providing more details.
“Norfolk Police have informed us that several NSU students have been the victims of a shooting at an isolated off-campus location near 50th Street and Hampton Blvd,” the university tweeted.
“NSU Police have secured the NSU campus. Counseling is being made available for any student in need of services.”
Homicide detectives are investigating the shooting with police seeking information from the public.
“As homicide detectives continue to investigate this early morning shooting, they ask for anyone with information about this incident to contact the Norfolk Crime Line at 1-888-LOCK-U-UP or submit a tip through the P3Tips mobile app,” Norfolk police said in a statement.
Local authorities were quoted as saying that a fight broke out at the party, where a suspect pulled out a gun and started shooting at the attendees.
Gun violence is rampant in the United States. According to the Gun Violence Archive, there have been at least 456 mass shootings in 2022, leaving 30, 237 people dead.
That’s an average of more than 1.8 mass shootings every day so far, according to CNN.
The 2018 Small Arms Survey found that there were approximately 393 million firearms in civilian hands in the country, or 120.5 firearms per 100 people.
That number is much higher now, given the soaring increase in gun sales in the past few years.
US President Joe Biden in July said that a flood of guns was turning American communities into “killing fields” and vowed to reinstate a ban on assault rifles.
The remarks came in a White House ceremony to mark new gun control legislation that he signed on June 25.
“This has taken too long, with too much of a trail of bloodshed and carnage,” Biden said.
“The past many years, across our schools, places of worship, workplaces, stores, music festivals, nightclubs, and so many other everyday places, they have turned into killing fields.”