Earlier this week we reported that a popular Palm Springs gay club, Toucans Tiki Lounge, was the site of a shooting where two individuals were injured after a fight broke out early Sunday morning. Authorities are still searching for the individual who opened fire just before 2 a.m. He is described as a “Hispanic in his 20s-30s who was wearing a black hat, black hooded sweatshirt, black sweatpants, and tattoos on his neck”.
Sorry I don’t understand how the ‘greatest nation on the planet’ has this shit happening pic.twitter.com/jFHfag2zBI
— Ed Malyon (@eaamalyon) March 24, 2019
Toucans Tiki Lounge never responded for to our request for comment, but now we know more about one of the victims from that night.
Aaron Alter had finished his dancing shift at Toucans and had retreated to change into his street clothes. After the fight broke out at Toucans, Alter was outside the venue and heard gunshots. Then then described to The Desert Sun that he felt what was like a baseball bat hit him in the leg. When he saw blood rushing from his leg, people rushed him inside where he collapsed to the ground. Alter cinched his belt around his leg as a makeshift tourniquet to help stop the bleeding.
Alter described the fight as:
One guy was being jumped by four or five guys. This was an attack.
His initial instinct was to break up the fight so he proceeded to remove the person being jumped from the situation and walked out of the club with him. That is when the bullets began striking him and another victim also below the waist.
Alter and the other victim were transported to Desert Regional Medical Center where doctors informed him that the bullet did not exit his thigh, but instead broke apart due to his muscles. The recommend not removing the bullet fragments for fear of causing damage. It will take from two to three months for Alter to walk normally and who knows how long it will be until he is able to dance again, which is his primary source of income.
At the time of the incident, Alter was uninsured and is now relying on Medi-Cal to assist with medical expenses. Alter also tours with the dance troupe Men Next Door Uncovered, which he will not be able to rejoin until he is fully healed. But because of the great impact this incident will have on his life, a close friend and colleague of Alter’s has created a GoFundMe page to help the dancer continue supporting his family. He has five children ranging from 1 to 18 years old.
Alter is confident that he will have a full recovery and is optimistic. He says:
It’s like a hiccup. I can’t let this beat me or get the best of me. I have to get through it and recover so I can get on with my life again.
Here is a message from Alter after the love and support he received from friends and family.
H/T: The Desert Sun