Nine people were shot dead and five others injured in a stampede after guns fired at a Columbia mall, sparking widespread panic as people “shouted and screamed.”
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According to a law enforcement source, “gang revenge” may have fueled a shooting in South Carolina on Saturday that left 14 people injured.
According to local police forces in Columbia, the capital of South Carolina, 14 people were injured after shots were fired around 2:30 p.m. local time (7:30 p.m. UK time) on Saturday.
The Columbiana Center on Harbison Boulevard was evacuated as officers searched the area for the shooter and later arrested three people.
Columbia Deputy Police Chief Melron Kelly told reporters nine people were shot but there were no deaths.
The victims are between 15 and 73 years old. Five people were injured in the stampede triggered by the incident.
Zuma Press/PA Images)
A law enforcement source said Yahoo News that the shooting was gang-related, while Columbia Police Chief Skip Holbrook said authorities do not believe the attack was accidental.
That The shooting was likely due to an ongoing conflict‘ the police said.
As of this morning, Jewayne M. Price is the only person arrested by police.
The 22-year-old is charged with illegally carrying a handgun, police said.
Two other men, also arrested for questioning, were released from police custody after it was determined they were not involved in the shooting.
Police are now working to identify two other people who witnesses say were in possession of guns. Detectives have said at least two guns were fired.
Zuma Press/PA Images)
Investigators say at least three suspects drew guns in the middle of the mall.
Cindy Paris Rectenwald and her daughter Rachel were in the mall’s food court when the shooting began, with the mother initially hiding under a table.
She said they thought it was rain hitting the glass roof before she saw people running towards them.
Ms Rectenwald described how she saw people “screaming and screaming” as they ran towards the exit doors in the food court.
The couple got lost in the crowd and Ms. Rectenwald got under a table, but when she spotted her daughter, she was told to “come along” and they made it outside.
She said the gun sounded like an automatic gun.
The police department wrote on Twitter at the time: “We have confirmed that people were injured in the incident – they are being treated medically. The extent of the injuries is currently unknown.
“If you need to pick up your loved ones, the reunion area is 320 Columbiana Drive – Fairfield Inn. We are working on a transit option to get people who may still be around the mall to the reunification area.”
Mall employees who were “requested to take shelter on the spot for safety reasons” were taken out by law enforcement and warned: “DO NOT leave a store until directed to do so by the proper authorities.”
The parking lot was closed when dozens of emergency vehicles arrived. An ambulance was seen leaving the area around 3pm.
One Twitter user said, “Prayers for those at Columbiana Mall.”
Another added: “I was having such a good day until I got a call that someone shot Columbiana Mall.
“My girlfriend had to run for her life to get out of this and I’m so happy she made it, but the sacrifices…”
https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/us-news/gang-revenge-shooting-shopping-centre-26731152 'Gang revenge' shooting at mall wounds 14 including teens and elderly woman