‘Do not promote or condone gun violence’: Boxing league responds to deadly St. Pete shooting

Pinellas County

PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – The Neighborhood Boxing League (NBL) has issued a statement regarding Saturday evening’s boxing event shooting that took the life of a man and wounded four others.

Pastor Elvis Piggott, the spokesperson and advisor for the NBL, sent 8 On Your Side the response, expressing condolences for those involved in the shooting.

“We do not promote or condone gun violence in any shape or form and want to acknowledge that the shooting that took place Saturday night was not a result of the event,” the statement read. “The Gloves Up, Guns Down movement is more than a saying; it is a mindset and an action we embrace and live by. This movement was initiated to inspire real change within our city and surrounding communities. We know we must work together to change the mindset of our youth and show a different type of strength that does not involve pulling a trigger.”

Piggott’s response went on by thanking local officials for not only their support in fighting gun violence but for their “swift reaction” following Saturday night’s incident.

“We are conducting our own inhouse investigation concerning the events that took place last night. Although we took the necessary safety measures, we are always looking for additional ways to enhance security for future events,” the statement said.

According to the St. Petersburg Police Department, a temporary boxing ring was set up in a back parking lot area of Skyway Plaza.

Police say a fight broke out between two groups of people, causing several shots to be fired.

A man died from his injuries at a local hospital and four other people, two men and two women, were also injured in the shooting.

St. Pete police arrested and charged 21-year-old Robert Lee Cooley in the shooting for carrying a concealed firearm and discharging of a firearm in public.

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