1 dead, 3 injured in tavern shooting

Springfield police still looking for the shooter and for the cause of weekend violence.

Ernest Edwards, 34, was pronounced dead at the scene inside the bar, officials said.

Three Springfield men — Anthony Clark, 28; Joshua Clay, 23; and Richard Arnold, 29 — were taken in private vehicles to Springfield Regional Medical Center, where they were treated for gunshot related injuries, police said.

Because victims were taken by private vehicles to the hospital, several officers responded there to provide additional security as they investigated what had happened.

Clark and Arnold had been treated and released by Sunday afternoon.

“Mr. Clay was stabilized at Springfield Medical Center and then transferred to Miami Valley,” said Sgt. David Emmel of the Springfield Police Division.

Clay was transported to Miami Valley Hospital by CareFlight. A hospital official declined to release information on his condition because of a request by Clay.

Investigators have not identified a suspect nor determined a motive in the shooting at this time, Emmel said.

Springfield officers were dispatched to the Nite Owl Tavern, 601 West Main St., around 11:55 p.m. after receiving calls related to the shooting.

“Looks like there was a possible fight, a man walked out the door and possibly had a gun,” Emmel said.

Police also received subsequent calls about possible shots fired in or near the bar.

One victim told police he was leaving the bar when two unknown people outside began to fire shots toward the tavern.

“I don’t know if he saw them before or after the shots were fired inside the bar,” Emmel said.

Another victim reported he was involved in an “altercation” with another man inside the bar who displayed a gun and fired shots.

A third victim told police he was playing pool when he saw another man pulled out a gun. The victim said he was shot while attempting to leave the tavern.

The Nite Owl Tavern has been on the Springfield Police Division’s list of bars with the highest number of calls for service. The tavern had a total of 218 calls for service over a 13-year period starting in 1997.

In July 2000, a Springfield police officer was shot and seriously injured in the tavern’s parking lot during a traffic stop.

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