Temple University journalism alums Brad Larrison and Sarah Fry have been shooting documentary “This is Kensington” for about a year.
“What we’re trying to do is document daily life – the good and the bad,” Larrison said on Tuesday.
“We follow different people around in all walks of life and just try to tell stories you don’t really read about in most mainstream newspapers or hear about on the nightly news. We feel a lot of major media outlets only show up in neighborhoods like that when there’s a shooting.”
But the pair were confronted with that exact reality Friday when, as they filmed on Amber Street, bullets began to fly.
When the smoke cleared, one man was dead, a second was critically injured – and the entire incident was caught on tape.
“In that video, it’s something you see that happens all over Philadelphia and all over America, and it’s invisible to most people,” Larrison said.
He said the team is currently taking a break, “assessing things and trying to figure out where to go from here.”
“We’d really like to follow up with the people in that particular neighborhood and with families of the victim, if possible.”
But Larrison stressed the incident doesn’t singularly represent the daily lives of Kensington residents, nor should undue importance be placed on the crime as witnessed from the filmmakers’ point of view.
“It’s not about us at all – it had nothing to do with us,” he said. “We just happened to be there, in the wrong place at the wrong time.”
A clip uploaded to Vimeo shows a shooting near Cambria and Amber streets that wounded two people around 6 p.m. Thursday, killing one of them.
The video can be viewed here, but the content is extremely graphic.
“Today, while working on an ongoing documentary project, This is Kensington, Brad and myself were caught in the middle of this violence as it happened,” Fry wrote on the site.
“Some would say wrong place, wrong time. The project we are working on is focused on telling the stories of everyday people in Kensington, the good and the ‘bad’ as some might call it.”
She said a man who saw the pair filming invited them to come talk with him and his family about the area as he picked up his children from daycare.
But as soon as the man put his infant child and young daughter inside his house, Fry said she heard four gunshots.
“Down the street only two houses away a tan car with the passenger side door open drives closer,” Fry recalled on the website, writing she couldn’t see from her angle who was shooting but the sounds continued to come closer.
“The driver hits the van that I am crouching next to for cover, right in front of me, not two feet away,” she wrote.
“His head smashes into the window and there is smoke everywhere. Music is still playing loudly from the car.
“It probably only took a few seconds to register what happened but it felt like an eternity. The four-year old-girl with the birthday hat is screaming, panicked, crying for her father.
“Brad and I look at what’s happening. With my left hand I dial 911, with my right hand I begin taking photographs. The passenger runs to the street and falls to the ground.
“The driver doesn’t move. The driver’s sister comes up to the car and sees what happened, ‘Oh my God.'”
Police said a man riding a bike opened fire into the Cadillac, fatally shooting the 20-year-driver in the head.
The victim was later identified as Theodore Cossum, of the 2200 block of Wiliam Street.
The passenger, 27, was shot once in the shoulder and taken to Temple University Hospital in critical condition.
Officers quickly chased down the alleged gunman and arrested him, recovering a weapon he allegedly discarded along the 2100 block of Monmouth Street.
The suspect has been identified as Daniel Walker, 24.
He is charged with murder and related offenses.