15-year-old critical after being shot by police officer near Six Flags Over Georgia

What was meant to be a fun first day back at Six Flags Over Georgia turned into a series of brawls within the park that ended in gunfire off-campus. The Georgia Bureau of Investigations said Cobb County officers were involved in the shooting that put a teen to the hospital.

Multiple sources reached out to FOX 5 Atlanta about a large police presence outside the Austell park Saturday evening on opening day. Video shared with FOX 5 shows teens running through the park, a group of males kicking one person on the ground and a helicopter flying overhead.

In another video reviewed by FOX 5, multiple gunshots could be heard off-camera, leading to panic.

According to the GBI, there were nearly 500-600 people at the park Saturday evening, running and fighting. Cobb County police led the crowd out of the park onto South Service Road when an unknown number of suspects fired shots at the officers.

An officer returned fire, hitting one of the suspects, later identified as a 15-year-old. That teen was taken to Grady Memorial Hospital and remains in critical condition, according to the GBI. The GBI said a handgun was recovered near the minor.

A spokesperson for the Cobb County Police Department confirmed the officer was not injured. One unmarked patrol vehicle was damaged.

The GBI will conduct an independent investigation. Once complete, the case file will be given to the Cobb County District Attorney’s Office for review.

Six Flags Over Georgia issued a statement to FOX 5 Atlanta Digital Team:

"Our goal is to provide safe, fun entertainment. We employ state of the art security systems and metal detection, maintain a robust and vigilant Public Safety Department, and have strong support from Cobb County Police who are present both inside and outside the park. Every guest is expected to follow our strict code of conduct and anyone unwilling to follow that code of conduct is unwelcome.

It is incredibly disappointing that our community is disrupted at public events throughout the region by groups of underaged youth. Just like other venues in the area, we are committed to keeping this type of trouble outside our park and off our property. There was police activity involving gunshots; we want to confirm there was no shooting at our property or parking lot. This took place on South Service Road that is not owned or operated by Six Flags. However, we join our community and the Atlanta region in our commitment to safety and security. We won’t put up with that type of activity here."

A couple reached out to FOX 5 Atlanta stating they were in line to enter the park when it opened on Saturday at 11 a.m. They claimed they weren't sent through metal detectors, despite Six Flags' statement.

"My bag wasn’t even checked, we were simply told to go through to the entrance," the FOX 5 viewer said.

The spokesperson from Six Flags Over Georgia reached back out to FOX 5 Atlanta after reviewing the viewer's claim:

"Six Flags employs state-of-the-art screening equipment at the park entrance to prohibit unauthorized objects from entering the park. Every guest passes through this system prior to entering the gate, though they may not even notice.

"A few years ago, we moved from manual bag checks to Evolv, an advanced security screen system that represents hands-off screening technology to detect metals or any other unauthorized objects. Evolv screens all incoming individuals without requiring them to go through multiple security checks. Our Public Safety team instantly sees what is in their bag and only physically screens individuals with abnormal or unauthorized objects in their coat, pockets or bags."

Last year, opening day faced a similar ending. A large group of teens were removed from the park after a series of brawls.

It's unclear whether any of the people involved in this year's incidents will face legal consequences.

Drivers were encouraged to avoid the area as police blocked the roadways surrounding the park.