Two people were killed and others injured in a shooting at a park in Richmond, Virginia, as high school seniors and their families were leaving a theater where they had just finished exams, police said.

Two suspects were taken into custody following the incident, which broke out shortly after 5pm [τοπική ώρα· τα μεσάνυχτα ώρα Ελλάδας] on the campus of Virginia Commonwealth University, where high school graduation ceremonies are held, Richmond Police Acting Chief Rick Edwards and other officials told reporters.

The dead were men, aged 18 and 36, and one of the suspects is 19, according to Mr Edwards.

The US is paying an extremely heavy price for the widespread proliferation of weapons on its soil and the ease with which its residents can gain access to them. In 2021, some 49,000 people died from gunshots in the US, in other words over 130 deaths per day, more than half of which were classified as suicides. It was a tragic record for the second consecutive year: in 2020, 45,000 deaths were recorded. And, last year, there were some 44,000 gun-related deaths, half of which were murders, accidents or cases of self-defense, the other half suicides, according to the numbers of the specialist website Gun Violence Archive.