One San Francisco 49ers fans was critically injured and another wounded Saturday outside a Georgia restaurant by a New Orleans Saints fan who was angered by their cheering for the team, a TV station reported.
Niners fan Corey Adams told WSB-TV that he and friend Chris Middleton were approached in the parking lot of an Applebee’s restaurant by a Saints fan who had departed angrily after arguing with them during Saturday’s game.
When the two friends left the Duluth restaurant after the game, which the 49ers won, 36-32, the man suddenly reappeared and started shooting at them, Adams told the station.
“I took off running and he started shooting at me and shot like four or five times and he grazed the back of my head,” Adams, 30, told the station. He suffered a slight wound to the crown of his head.
Middleton, 30, was taken to an area hospital in critical condition, the station reported.
Adams told the station that he was hoping his friend Middleton, who had just moved back home from California, would pull through.
“He was talking,” Adams told the station. “He was laying on the ground talking about his kids, talking about his wife.”
Police identified the shooter as Donald Ayro, 31, the station reported. Based on a description of him and his vehicle, police apprehended him driving away from the scene of the crime.
He was reportedly charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm, possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony and two counts of aggravated assault, the station reported.
The shooting is just the latest of an unfortunate string of sports-related incidents to afflict San Francisco sports fans in the past year.
Last March, San Francisco Giants fan Bryan Stow was brutally attacked and hospitalized with brain damage in Los Angeles after the opening game of the team’s 2011 season. And several violent incidents broke out last August during and after the preseason game between the 49ers and their cross-bay counterparts the Oakland Raiders.