‘No time to react’: Victim recalls moment firework was thrown at his table

Local

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – Wichita police are trying to find the people responsible for throwing a lit firework under the table of a group of people sitting on the patio at Pumphouse Bar and Grill in Old Town.

Josh Yates said he and his wife joined a group of friends at Pumphouse Tuesday night.

“They were out playing volleyball earlier that evening,” said Yates. “They got some food and were just going to have a few drinks and call it a night.”

Yates said they had just requested their tabs, boxing up leftovers when his wife noticed something strange.

“My wife was sitting across from me, and she pointed at the firework and said ‘He just threw something,’ said Yates.

Seconds later, he said the mortar shell went off sending sparks flying and smoke everywhere.

“It happened so fast, there’s really no time to react,” said Yates. “Kind of showered everybody with the firework. You could definitely feel the heat on it.”

The video shows a white car drives up, the firework goes off, and the car drives away. The Pumphouse and Yates said the group only suffered minor injuries. Staff said it could have been much worse, and it was a total disregard for the safety of their guests.

“If that would have landed on the table instead of under the table then we’re talking about probably some significant injuries,” said Daron Adelgren, Pumphouse General Manager. “So for these people to not think about that before they acted and clearly not care is disturbing.”

Wichita police said this is one of three similar incidents that happened between 10 and 11 p.m. involving fireworks thrown at people. Police believe the white car is connected to all the cases.

“The suspect vehicle we have right now is a newer white Dodge Avenger with dark tinted windows and was occupied we believe by multiple individuals and there was also damage on the rear driver’s side bumper of this vehicle,” said Officer Charley Davidson.

Yates has a message for whoever is responsible.

“If you were sitting on that patio and somebody threw a firework at you, how would you respond? Just grow up,” said Yates.

If you have any information on the suspect vehicle, call detectives at (316) 268-4407, the See Something Say Something hotline at (316) 519-2282, Crime Stoppers at (316) 267-2111, or you can contact detective Vincent Reel at vreel@wichita.gov or (316) 268-4577.

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