In a press conference today, Pech Sen said two Canadians, one Italian and one Colombian citizen are among the dead. He said uniforms indicate the dead include three members of security staff, and that one woman was killed in the stampede following the shooting.
Pech said a lone gunman apparently tried to enter the nightclub, but was denied access because he had a gun.
The gunman began to exchange fire with another person inside, he said, and festival security personnel tried to stop the shooting and came under fire.
Pech said it was not a terrorist attack, and said three people had been detained nearby, but it was unclear if they had been involved in the shooting.
"We know of another shooting incident that occurred near the nightclub, but we are investigating whether that is related" to the nightclub shootings," Pech said.
He said 20 bullet casings from three different pistols had been found at the scene, and said it was unclear if the security detail had been armed or fired any of the weapons.
The shooting apparently caused a rush of people heading for the exits at the beach-side club, and the lone female victim was apparently killed during the stampede. Pech said 15 people were injured, included one Mexican woman who was seriously injured. He said eight of the injured —including two U.S. citizens and one Canadian —had been treated for less serious injuries at local hospitals and released.
The BPM Festival released the following statement on Facebook today:
"It is with great sadness to share that police have confirmed reports of a lone shooter outside the Blue Parrot nightclub in Playa Del Carmen earlier today, which resulted in four fatalities and twelve injured. The violence began on 12th street in front of the club and three members of the BPM security team were among those whose lives were lost while trying to protect patrons inside the venue.
The BPM Festival has been working closely with the local authorities (Seguridad Publica / Policia Turistica) throughout the festival to ensure public safety and security for all visitors. We are overcome with grief over this senseless act of violence and we are cooperating fully with local law enforcement and government officials as they continue their investigation.
Our thoughts and prayers are with all the victims and their families and all those affected by these tragic events."
A publicist for The BPM Festival tells Billboard reports of a separate shooting during a BPM closing party at The Jungle is incorrect. Clips purportedly captured during one shooting shows clubbers scattering and seeking refuge (see below).
Canadian DJ John Acquaviva, a headliner at the BPM closing party at The Jungle, tells Billboard Playa Del Carmen is on lockdown.
Scottish DJ Jackmaster, the top-billed performer at Sunday night's "This Is The End" party, tweeted, "Someone has come into the club in Playa Del Carmen and opened fire. 4-5 dead and many wounded. Stay in ur fuckin hotel if you're here at BPM."
BPM announced via its Twitter account that all shows and parties have been shut down while police continue their investigations.
Concert-destination resort Riviera Maya is just 16 km away from the site of the shooting; Phish played the venue on the night of Jan 15.
The BPM Festival this year was celebrating its 10th anniversary. The festival recently announced its plan to expand to Brazil and Portugal.
More to come.