RACINE, Wis. - Two people were shot and killed inside Rerun's Lounge in Racine on Sunday, Jan. 1. The victims have been identified as 66-year-old Avery Stewart and 56-year-old Billy Petty.
Officers encountered a chaotic scene when they arrived at the lounge around 2:30 a.m.
Family members said the man the bar was named after was among the two shot and killed, identifying him as Avery "Rerun" Stewart, 66. According to family, a fight started and someone left to get a gun.
"He was happy," said Akem Stilo, Stewart's grandson. "We were having a good time. It was New Year's."
Avery "Rerun" Stewart.
Stilo never imagined the last few moments of 2022 would also be the last he’d spend with his grandfather.
"We were enjoying our time together," said Stilo.
Two grandchildren said Stewart owned Rerun's Lounge. They said he was shot and killed after a fight around 2:30 a.m. Police said another person inside the bar was also killed. Racine police did not identify either victim Sunday.
"I really can't tell you what happened," said Stilo. "I just know he got caught in the mix of some stuff that happened, and he didn't make it."
Surveillance from across the street shows police pulling up to the bar. Investigators remained at the bar well into Sunday morning.
"That was a sight to see, all the police and everything taped off," a neighbor said. "This wasn’t the first time. This has happened before where we couldn’t leave the house."
The neighbor said she heard gunshots but thought they were part of New Year’s celebrations.
"If that’s how we’re getting ready to start, everybody better buckle up," she said. "It’s going to be a very interesting year."
The bar has cameras above the entrance.
Racine police asked anyone who was there Sunday morning to contact investigators.
Stewart's family said they hope 2023 brings justice and peace.
"He was loving," said Stilo. "He was caring. He looked out for his people, community. You know, he was a good person, a real stand-up dude."
No arrests have been made.
The Racine Police Department is urging and requesting any people inside the bar at the time of the shooting to come forward.
Anyone with information is urged to contact Racine Police Department Investigator Mueller at 262-939-3071 or Investigator Lauer at 262-721-2951. Those who wish to remain anonymous may contact Crime Stoppers by phone at 262-636-9330 or through the Crime Stoppers app by using the p3 app.