The Barn in Sanford, Florida—just north of Orlando—is a mid-sized country music venue that recently has hosted concerts by country artists such as Craig Campbell, Emerson Drive, Drew Baldridge, and many others. As the name implies, The Barn mostly caters to central Florida’s country music clientele. But on Sunday night (8-14), the venue decided to open its doors to the fans of Brad Markovita, also known as “Bezz Believe”—a local rapper. As the venue was letting out at closing time, trouble ensued.
At 2:00 a.m. Monday (8-15) morning, a total of 23 shots were fired into the crowded parking lot, with numerous bullets striking the venue, and one individual—a black man in his 20’s—being struck multiple times by the gunfire. He is currently in critical condition at a local hospital.
Though initial reports claimed that the victim was one of the performers Sunday evening, it is now believed the victim might have been part of one of the performer’s entourages. The victim’s name has yet to be released, but Bezz Believe is Caucasian, while the victim has been identified as African American. Other guests performed with Bezz Believe during the concert as well.
At the moment police have no suspect, partly due to attendees of the concert refusing to cooperate with police.
“This was a crowded parking lot. The club was just letting out for the night. We know there are many people in that parking lot that could have seen something that will help with this investigation,” Sanford police spokeswoman Bianca Gillett told the Orlando Sentinel.
Bezz Believe addressed the shooting on Monday via social network.
“I had a packed out show at the Barn,” he says. “I heard some dudes got violent down the street from the venue at the end of the night. The news just looking for a story so they the titteling [sic] the story like it was me for views. Yes everybody I am okay!! Nobody shot at me or remotely tried anything negative towards me … The Barn got metal detectors at the front their door. Their security is 100% on point. If the media attempts to slander the Venue at all I will be on they ass! The Barn management and their whole staff is on point. They can’t stop what happens damn near off the property of the venue.”
Though Bezz Believe has characterized the shooting as occurring away from the venue, according to the venue’s co-owner Scott Magowan, some of the shots fired hit the back of the building and the air conditioner for The Barn. “We were trying to get people out of here and suddenly we started hearing things. Somebody heard firecrackers going off. It wasn’t firecrackers at all as it turned out,” Magowan told the Orlando Sentinel. Magowan says police retrieved a total of 23 bullet casings from the scene.